Wisdom teeth removal is a rite of passage that typically happens in early adulthood. The dreaded extraction removes those large, flat back teeth when there is not enough room for them in your mouth. So while most people have their wisdom teeth removed between the ages of 17 and 25, is it possible to have your wisdom teeth extracted later in life?
The easy answer is yes. You can have your wisdom teeth removed at any point in your life. However, there are some things to think about if you are in an older demographic and consider having your wisdom teeth removed.
First, not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed. Scientists believe that our early ancestors needed their wisdom teeth because of their diets. But as our mouths evolved, our jawlines became smaller with less room for these extra teeth.
Today, wisdom teeth often cause discomfort and oral health complications, resulting in them needing to be extracted. Therefore, most dentists prefer to remove the wisdom teeth when they are young to prevent future oral health problems.
The location of wisdom teeth makes them difficult to properly brush and floss, causing tooth decay and infections. Keeping your wisdom teeth also puts you at risk of having an impacted wisdom tooth, partially or entirely under your gums. Impacted wisdom teeth can lead to even more oral health problems.
If you still have your wisdom teeth after age 50, it is possible to have them removed. Your dentist might recommend the extraction if:
You have a cyst forming near the bone or roots
You are showing signs of gum disease
Your teeth are shifting or overcrowding
The surrounding teeth are showing damage.
Having your wisdom teeth extracted can solve these issues. However, your dentist might want you to try other things before the procedure for the following reasons:
The process is more involved because older adults have increased bone density than children.
It can take a longer time to heal.
Older adults are more at risk for complications such as bleeding, infection, or nerve injury.
The best way to limit complications and monitor your wisdom teeth is to keep a good oral care routine at home and regularly visit your dentist. Your dentist can watch for emerging issues and catch them promptly.
If it is time for you to have a regular check-up or think you might need to have your wisdom teeth removed, reach out to Value Dental Care. Our trained staff is always ready to help you with all of your oral care needs. We offer high-quality care at affordable prices. Email or call us today to schedule an appointment at our Spring Hill (352-684-1274) or Crystal River (352-794-6139) locations.