Wisdom teeth need to be removed for most people, so getting them out as early as possible is ideal. However, if your child hasn't received dental X-rays for a while, you might not know when their wisdom teeth are coming. If that's the case, then here are three signs that your child's wisdom teeth are about to emerge.
Hurts When They Chew
Before wisdom teeth actually break through the surface of the gums, they tend to create pain or tension when a person is chewing. This is because chewing tenses the gums and effectively stretches them over the underlying tooth, which is already pressing up against the underside of the gums. Initially, chewing will be the only time that your child feels any discomfort, but if you don't take action to have them removed soon, they'll start to hurt more often, even when they're not chewing.
As the wisdom teeth start to break through the surface of the gums, they will cause the gums to bleed. This is an extremely important sign to not ignore. If the wisdom teeth are already breaking the surface, they need to be evaluated by a dentist right away. Not every single person is going to need to have their wisdom teeth removed, but the majority will. Letting the teeth grow in could cause overcrowding and even lead to an infection in the gums, so you don't want to just let your child have them grow in and wait and see.
Pain in Neighboring Molars
Some wisdom teeth don't grow correctly and therefore don't come in correctly, either. In fact, it's not uncommon for a wisdom tooth to grow in sideways, pushing towards neighboring teeth instead of pushing towards the gums. When this happens, your child might not have bleeding gums or pain when they chew, but their other molars may hurt. This is because the wisdom tooth is pushing up against those molars under the surface. If this goes on for long enough, those molars will become overcrowded and start moving closer together, and the nearest molar may be damaged by the wisdom tooth pushing up against it. So if your child has pain in their molars, you especially need to get them to a dentist right away.
Getting dental X-rays is the best way to know in advance how the wisdom teeth are developing, so consider visiting a dentist for a check-up and saying yes to this procedure. It'll save your child time and trouble and potential pain, too.
To learn more, contact a family dentist.