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WISDOM TEETH:
SOME FUN AND INTERESTING FACTS


Wisdom teeth usually appear in the mouth between the ages of 17 and 25, often causing problems that lead to their removal. Since almost everyone has at least one wisdom tooth removed, it might be wise (and interesting) to learn some facts about wisdom teeth!

  • Wisdom teeth are vestigial third molars, meaning that through the process of evolution, the teeth have stopped forming properly or have stopped being used. Ancient civilizations needed their third molars due to the diet they ate: raw meat and dense, fibrous roots or plants. A third set of molars would have been a necessity. As the human diet changed to softer, cooked foods, the use for an extra set of teeth became nearly non-existent. Over time, the human jaw shortened, preventing the normal, healthy eruption of wisdom teeth.
  • Wisdom teeth get their nick-name from the time in a person’s life when these teeth general grow in or start to cause problems in the mouth: ages 17 through 25. This is sometimes referred to as the “age of wisdom.” Interestingly, some cultures call wisdom teeth “love teeth” because the teeth grow in at the same age when many experience their first love.
  • Wisdom teeth are removed for a number of reasons.
    1. Impaction. Impacted wisdom teeth are teeth trapped below the gums that cannot grow in because there is not enough room in the jaw. This condition often causes infection and damage to other teeth growing nearby. The formation of cysts around the impacted teeth is also a possibility.
    2. Crowding. Wisdom teeth often cause the jaw to become crowded, which not only causes pain but also may cause the surrounding teeth to move out of place, interfering with the bite.
    3. Dental work. The dentist or oral surgeon may remove wisdom teeth to make room for other dental procedures (i.e. braces).
  • A growing number of people never get wisdom teeth, and many people have fewer than four wisdom teeth. Some people have all four wisdom teeth grow in without experiencing a single problem and enjoy their extra chewing ability.

The surgical removal of wisdom teeth and the recovery afterward can be accomplished easier with a bit of preparation on the part of the patient. On the day of your surgical appointment, arrive rested, well-nourished, and hydrated. Also, avoid things like caffeine, hot drinks, carbonated beverages, and alcohol for the first few days after wisdom teeth have been extracted, and eat soft foods like yogurt, gelatin, ice cream, and applesauce. Avoid eating hard-to-chew foods for at least a week. Above all else, follow the advice off your dentist for the best results.

One thing is for sure: all people are unique and their dental needs must be approached on a person-by-person basis. If you are experiencing pain or other problems with your wisdom teeth, pay us a visit. We will evaluate your individual needs. Together, we can determine the correct course for the treatment of your wisdom teeth.

For all of your family, cosmetic or restorative dental needs, we invite you to contact Paris Family Dental. Call us today to schedule your appointment at (903) 732-0061! Visit us at 2333 Lamar Ave, Paris, TX 75460 to learn more about our team, our practice, and how we provide excellence in dentistry in our area.


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