Dentist showing impacted wisdom tooth

First Signs of Wisdom Teeth Coming In

Did you know that the arrival of wisdom teeth can sometimes cause discomfort and lead to various oral health issues? Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, usually develop in late adolescence or early adulthood, and their arrival can sometimes lead to discomfort and various oral health issues. This is because not everyone has enough space in their mouth to accommodate these new teeth, which may grow improperly or cause complications.

It’s important to be aware of the possible signs and symptoms related to the growth of third molars. Let’s explore common symptoms and signs that indicate your wisdom teeth are beginning to emerge.

What Is Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth are the last set of teeth that typically develop in a person’s mouth, usually during late adolescence or early adulthood. Each corner of the mouth will develop a wisdom tooth, resulting in four in total. These teeth are often referred to as ‘wisdom’ teeth because they tend to emerge at a time in a person’s life that is often associated with gaining wisdom and maturity.

While some people might have enough space in their mouth to accommodate these latecomers, others may face discomfort or complications because of lack of space or improper growth angle. That’s why proper knowledge of the first signs of third molars coming in is vital for maintaining proper oral health.

Wisdom Teeth Signs of Coming In

Mild Pain in the Back of the Mouth

Wisdom teeth, the last adult teeth to grow, usually begin to emerge at the very back of the gums around your late teens or early twenties. This process can often lead to persistent, dull pain in the back of the mouth.

This is a common sign of third molar teeth growth, but the intensity depends from person to person. The pain could spread out to the jaw, throat, or neck, especially if the tooth is growing at an odd angle or is impacted. This means it is trapped under the gums or jawbone.

Tooth Sensitivity When Biting or Chewing

These problematic teeth can press against your other molars, prompting tooth sensitivity. This can be particularly noticeable when chewing or biting food. This sensitivity might be either a sharp, sudden pain or a longer, more persistent ache.

The amount of pressure the incoming wisdom tooth applies to neighboring teeth can alter the level of discomfort. In some more severe cases, this sensitivity might even affect eating. If left unchecked, this can lead to tooth decay.

Gum Tenderness or Swelling

As the third molars begin to push through the gum, this area may become tender, red, or swollen. Gum disease may develop if the inflammation is not addressed immediately. The swelling can cause discomfort when eating or drinking, especially hot or cold foods and drinks. Due to increased sensitivity, even regular brushing can become painful.

Jaw Pain or Stiffness

The growth of these problematic teeth can also lead to jaw pain or stiffness. When the growing tooth presses onto your jawbone or if an infection starts, you might notice discomfort. This stiffness could limit the ability to open your mouth wide and cause discomfort while eating, yawning, or even speaking.

Bad Taste or Bad Breath

An impacted wisdom tooth can sometimes cause an unpleasant taste or bad breath. This is due to bacteria buildup around the affected area, leading to an unpleasant taste and odor. Even if you brush, floss, and use mouthwash diligently, these issues might persist. If the cause is related to the incoming wisdom teeth or an infection, removing them may be required to resolve the issue.

Formation of Cysts or Tumors Around Impacted Wisdom Teeth

In severe cases, if they are impacted, cysts or tumors can form around them. These fluid-filled sacs can damage the nearby teeth, jawbone, and nerves. If left untreated, this issue could lead to serious complications like the spread of infection to other body parts or uncontrolled growth of growths.

Your dental professional can detect such issues during a routine check-up or with a dental X-ray and may suggest removing impacted wisdom teeth if necessary to prevent further problems. Intense pain can also suggest that the situation has progressed seriously and requires immediate professional attention.

When Should You Consult a Dentist About Your Wisdom Tooth?

  • Severe Pain. If you’re experiencing severe and persistent pain in the back of your mouth or jaw, it may be due to the eruption or impaction of a wisdom tooth. While over-the-counter analgesics can offer temporary respite, it is essential to visit a reliable dental professional to know the source of the discomfort and establish a suitable treatment plan.
  • Bad Breath or Bad Taste. Persistent bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth that doesn’t improve with regular oral hygiene practices could indicate an infection or cavity associated with your third molar teeth. If you’re struggling with this issue, you should see a dentist.
  • Tooth Sensitivity. If you notice increased sensitivity in your third molars, especially when biting or chewing food, it might be a sign that they are emerging. Your dentist can perform an examination and recommend specific treatments or routines to help manage this sensitivity.
  • Gum Inflammation. Swollen, red, or tender gums around the area where the third molar teeth are expected to emerge may indicate their arrival. They could also signify an infection. If home care remedies like rinsing with warm salt water do not relieve your symptoms, it’s a good idea to schedule a visit with your dentist.
  • Other Complications. Although less common, symptoms like fever, swollen lymph nodes and even difficulty opening your mouth can be signs of issues with your third molar teeth. These symptoms may indicate an infection or impaction of a wisdom tooth and should be examined by a dentist promptly.

Tips on Managing Your Third Molar Teeth

  • Regular Dental Check-Ups. How to know if you have wisdom teeth developing may not be easy to recognize on your own. Scheduling appointments with your dentist every 6 months will help clarify this. These regular check-ups can identify the growth of wisdom teeth early or alert you to potential complications.
  • Maintain Oral Hygiene. Keep a healthy oral hygiene routine, including brushing twice a day and flossing daily. This practice can help prevent infections around emerging third molars and ease discomfort.
  • Diet Modification. If your molars are sensitive, avoid hard-to-chew foods. Light, soft foods can help ease the stinging sensation and inflammation in the gums caused by growing wisdom teeth.
  • Use of Over-the-Counter Pain Relievers. If you experience discomfort or pain, you may use over-the-counter pain relief medicines. But, if you experience persistent pain, you should consult a dental professional.
  • Saltwater Rinse. Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water can soothe gum soreness and relieve swelling associated with the eruption of wisdom teeth.
  • Cold Compress. Apply a cold pack or ice wrapped in a thin cloth to the jawline to reduce swelling and numb the pain.
  • Stay Hydrated. Drink lots of water to help keep your mouth clean and reduce inflammation.
  • Avoid Alcohol, Caffeine, and Tobacco. These substances can increase tooth and gum sensitivity, leading to more discomfort while your third molars are coming in.

Prevent Dental Issues: Get Your Wisdom Teeth Checked Now

Knowing the first signs of wisdom teeth coming in is essential for maintaining good oral health. If you are experiencing symptoms like jaw pain, gum issues, or tooth sensitivity, this is the best time to consult Brisman Implant and Oral Surgery for professional dental care. Our team specializes in wisdom tooth extraction and ensures a smoother recovery process for our patients.

Early detection and timely intervention can prevent dental complications and promote the development of healthy teeth. It is advisable to stay proactive about your oral health to make a brighter smile for years to come. Don’t ignore any potential complications related to the arrival of wisdom teeth; contact us today for a healthier smile.