Wisdom teeth are a set of molars located farthest to the back of the mouth, in addition to being the last to grow in. These teeth often don’t have room to grow in properly, potentially leading to pain, overcrowding, and other problems. For most people, a wisdom teeth removal procedure is essential in order to avoid oral health complications and make room for the other teeth in the mouth. If you’re seeking a career as a dental hygienist, you’ll be visiting with clients who may be approaching the time for a wisdom teeth removal surgery.
Below, discover five signs that it’s time for a client to get their wisdom teeth removed.
1. Graduates of Dental Hygienist School Should Look Out for Inflamed Gums
Is your client complaining about inflamed gums? When the wisdom teeth begin to emerge, a piece of gum tissue often forms near the new teeth which can potentially trap bacteria and food, leading to inflammation. The gums might feel sore to the touch, and might even bleed or appear swollen. After graduating from dental hygienist school, check the gum area around your client’s wisdom teeth to determine whether it’s time to get the teeth removed. Removing the wisdom teeth will prevent further gum irritation.
2. A Client Is Having Sinus Problems
When a client experiences unusual sinus problems, this might be due to the fact that their wisdom teeth are growing in on the upper jaw. Once the wisdom teeth are fully developed, they might overcrowd the mouth, pushing against the sinuses as a result and causing congestion, pain, sinus pressure and even headaches. If the upper wisdom teeth are causing sinus problems for a client, this means that they need to be removed in order to give the sinuses enough space to function properly.
3. Experiencing Unusual Irritation or Pain
Once the wisdom teeth come in, they can cause many different forms of pain and irritation for clients. If a client describes continuous aching toward the back of their mouth, or feels any discomfort in this area that wasn’t present in the past, it’s best to perform an x-ray to determine whether the wisdom teeth are causing this problem. During your dental hygiene courses, learning about the types of pain complaints associated with wisdom teeth will help you to know when it’s time for a client’s wisdom teeth to be removed.
4. Client’s Teeth Becoming Crooked
Most people don’t have enough room in their mouths to accommodate a set of wisdom teeth. When the wisdom teeth begin to grow in, they can cause the other teeth to move around and shift along the jawline. Not only is this painful, it can cause damage to other teeth, causing them to become crooked. In the case of moving teeth, it’s important to have the wisdom teeth extracted as soon as possible in order to prevent lasting tooth misalignments.
5. More Cavities than Normal
If you notice that one of your clients is developing more cavities than usual, their incoming wisdom teeth may be the culprit. As wisdom teeth can shift the position of the others, they can make the teeth harder to clean. This exposes clients to bacteria that’s difficult to clean, leading to cavities and infection. Additionally, the wisdom teeth themselves can become exposed to cavities as they are hard to reach. In this case, removing the wisdom teeth can lower the client’s overall risk of cavities.
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