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Dental Conditions > Impacted Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth can become impacted when they are trapped under the gums or bone, causing considerable pain. 

When trapped, wisdom teeth can easily decay and may even damage surrounding teeth. As such, impacted wisdom teeth require extraction.

Pain

You may experience severe pain in your teeth, gums, jaws, and even ears. This can occur due to pressure or infection.
 

Tenderness, Bleeding, & Swelling

Noticeably tender or swollen gums are a common symptom of impacted wisdom teeth. You may also experience some bleeding due to gum irritation.
 

Bad Breath or an Unpleasant Taste

An infection caused by an impacted wisdom tooth can create a foul smell or taste in your mouth.

Each type of impaction can have severe implications on the health and appearance of your smile.

In most cases, wisdom teeth erupt between the ages of 17 and 25. Patients in this age group should pay special attention to any changes in their bite and be aware of symptoms that may indicate impaction.

Lack of Space

Since wisdom teeth are the last to grow in, many patients may not have enough room for wisdom teeth to grow in properly.
 

Abnormal Development

The eruption of teeth can be unpredictable. Some grow in at awkward angles. This can lead to them becoming trapped under the jaw or gums.

Most of the time, an impacted wisdom tooth is easy to diagnose during a routine dental exam. During the exam, your doctor can perform a visual evaluation of your bite and review digital x-rays to determine where and how the tooth has become impacted. For more complex impaction, the doctor can also use 3-D imaging technology for a clear view of all the tissues involved.