Is it better to get braces or wait for a child’s wisdom teeth to come through? This is the most common question that most orthodontists are asked by their patients.
The common concern that all parents have about their children getting braces early on is that their wisdom teeth may erupt at a later stage and throw the rest of their teeth out of alignment. The truth is that most children don’t get their wisdom teeth until they enter their early college years, and there are very few if any children who will want to wait until then to start their orthodontic treatment.
Wisdom Teeth and How They Affect the Alignment of Teeth
Wisdom tooth removal is not necessary for everyone but may be needed for children who need braces as emerging wisdom teeth may crowd the mouth which does not help with the correct alignment of teeth. Keeping wisdom teeth can make it harder to get braces as well as increase the risk of children getting tooth decay and gum disease. Most children tend to get an orthodontic evaluation done by the age of 9-10 years after which the orthodontist can make a decision after analyzing the mouth.
5 Possible Problems When Wisdom Teeth Come In
- If wisdom teeth have only emerged partially, with a flap of skin covering part of wisdom teeth, then this flap of skin is a lot more likely to attract infections due to the trapping of food particles.
- If there is insufficient space in the mouth for the wisdom teeth to come through, they may remain trapped below the surface of the gums which can lead to great discomfort.
- Painful cysts and other oral problems may develop due to wisdom teeth becoming infected.
- The eruption of wisdom teeth may crowd the back of the mouth and begin to rub the inside of the mouth at an awkward angle.
- The risk of gum disease and tooth decay may increase if wisdom teeth erupt or partially erupt.
How Do I Know if Wisdom Teeth will Cause Problems?
It is difficult to ascertain whether or not your wisdom teeth will create problems without getting x-rays and visiting an orthodontist, oral surgeon or general dentist.
Why Wisdom Teeth Extraction is Recommended
Removing wisdom teeth is not necessary for everyone but it is advised to have children’s wisdom teeth extracted if they want to get braces. There has to be enough room in the mouth for the orthodontic treatment to be effective. Emerging wisdom teeth may overcrowd the mouth which can have a negative effect on the braces. Leaving wisdom teeth in place can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
Should Braces Come After Wisdom Tooth Extraction?
Wisdom teeth removal does not have to occur prior to getting braces. A lot of people tend to undergo orthodontic treatment when they are quite young, when their wisdom teeth have not started coming through yet. Wisdom teeth can be removed as and when they become a problem.
All patients are unique and there’s no one-size-fits-all treatment approach to preserve oral and dental health.
It is a difficult to predict whether one should have wisdom teeth removed or not without seeking the council of a general dentist, orthodontist or getting x-rays. It is best to have an orthodontist look and discuss the individual circumstances on the best course of treatment that is required.
This is a guest post by Emily Taylor who is currently the Online Marketing Manager at Thurman Orthodontics in Fresno, California. Emily enjoys writing and researching about having a healthy bite to improve a smile and bakes in her free time.