3 Signs That Indicate an Impacted Wisdom Tooth

Health & Medical Blog

Dealing with wisdom teeth is never something that patients look forward to. Unfortunately, if a wisdom tooth becomes impacted it is essential that you seek immediate dental care. Impacted wisdom teeth can cause a host of dental problems, including gum disease and tooth decay. Being able to accurately identify the symptoms of impacted wisdom teeth will help you seek dental care in a timely manner in the future.

Here are three signs to watch for that will let you know you might have an impacted wisdom tooth.

1. You begin to experience an unpleasant taste in your mouth.

Impacted wisdom teeth often become infected. These infections are caused by bacteria that begin to accumulate around the impacted tooth. The bacteria associated with dental infections can cause you to experience an unpleasant taste in your mouth.

It's important that you visit your dentist to have an infected impacted wisdom tooth removed. The bacteria causing the infection could find their way into your bloodstream and travel to your heart or other major organs. As soon as you notice that you have an unpleasant taste in your mouth that isn't caused by food or drink, make an appointment with your dentist to address the problem.

2. The lymph nodes in your neck appear swollen.

Your body's lymph system is often the first line of defense when it comes to fighting infection. If you have an impacted wisdom tooth that has become infected, your lymph system will attempt to address the infection by generating additional lymph fluid to send to the infection site. Since the lymph nodes in your neck are closest to the site of an infected tooth, these nodes will show evidence of an impacted wisdom tooth first.

A lymph node that is larger than two inches across signals that your body is not fighting the infected tooth successfully. If you notice lymph node swelling, make an appointment with your dentist to address your impacted wisdom tooth as quickly as possible to prevent the spread of infection.

3. You experience pain in your jaw.

Sometimes a wisdom tooth becomes completely encased in the jawbone; a condition referred to as a bony impaction. The longer an impacted wisdom tooth lies encased within the jawbone, the more pain you may experience when opening your mouth or chewing.

Visiting your dentist to have these impacted wisdom teeth removed will help you eliminate pain and restore proper function to your jawbone in the future.

An estimated 65% to 72% of patients will experience an impacted wisdom tooth. Being able to recognize the signs indicating your own wisdom tooth might be impacted will help you get the dental care you need to address the problem quickly.


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