Wisdom teeth, or third molars are usually the very last teeth to erupt into the back of your mouth. Some individuals are born without them ever developing, while most people will feel them coming into the mouth around age 18 (usually the age associated with obtaining wisdom—thus the word “wisdom” teeth).
Often times, these teeth will need to be extracted due to lack of room in the mouth or the inability to keep them clean. Many times, the teeth will form at an angle or will remain “impacted” or stuck in the jawbones, thereby also requiring an extraction procedure. If extractions are required, it is much better to have this done sooner rather than later as an older and denser jaw will make the procedure much more difficult and possibly extend the healing time. I’ve heard several patients tell me that their teeth were perfectly straight until their wisdom teeth came in.
Whether these individual teeth can cause the entire remaining dentition to become crowded is still up for debate within the orthodontic profession. One thing remains certain though—as long as your permanent fixed retainers are intact, the eruption of your wisdom teeth should not affect your orthodontic result. We’ll be glad to share our wisdom with you regarding your wisdom teeth at any time.