Your smile is an important part of who you are, which means you want to be able to show it off as often as possible. When it comes to a beautiful smile, the health of your teeth and gums matters, and when you have an impacted tooth, you run the risk of severe issues developing. Many people have impacted teeth, but not many understand the risks associated with choosing to do nothing about them. They can cause more problems than just cosmetic concerns, they affect your overall oral health.
What Is an Impacted Tooth?
If you’re unfamiliar with the term impacted, let us explain. An impacted tooth is one that doesn’t erupt fully above the gumline. Teeth can be partially or completely impacted, and one of the first types of teeth we tend to think about when we hear the term is wisdom teeth.
Typically the very last teeth to erupt, wisdom teeth can cause a lot of problems with the alignment of your smile. The reason wisdom teeth cause so many problems and often and don’t erupt properly is because the mouth is typically too small to accommodate them. This can affect the appearance and health of your smile.
Although many people consider wisdom teeth to be the most frequently affected, canine teeth are actually the most commonly impacted teeth. Because the canine teeth are located toward the front of the mouth, they can greatly affect the look of our smiles. With impacted canines, the baby teeth will normally remain in the mouth, which makes them appear too small as the adult teeth come in around them. This causes the smile symmetry to look unbalanced.
Problems with Teeth Trapped below the Gums
Not only can impacted teeth cause discomfort, they can also cause damage to the adjacent roots of the adult teeth. This makes it more difficult to fix the older a patient gets, so it’s best to fix this problem at a young age. They can also affect your orthodontic treatment. Imagine spending all that time fixing your smile only to have it ruined by an impacted tooth.
Impacted teeth also cause the following:
- Gum inflammation
- Pain and discomfort
- Gum disease
- Jaw alignment problems
- Tooth decay
How to Handle Impacted Teeth
As you can see, impacted teeth don’t do the mouth any good, which means your best course of action is getting rid of them permanently. It’s recommended to see a dental professional, so you can decide if extraction surgery is right for you. The last thing you want to do is let a pesky tooth wreak havoc on your smile. So schedule an appointment with your dental or orthodontic professional to talk about your options. Your smile and the health of your teeth and gums is too important.