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Advanced Orthodontics wisdom teeth removal

Does Everyone Have To Get Their Wisdom Teeth Removed?

Wisdom teeth have long been a topic of discussion. Interestingly, not everyone develops wisdom teeth, but for those who do, they can cause pain in some instances. Some do have wisdom teeth but have less than four. A common question asked by many: Does everyone have to get their wisdom teeth removed? The answer is no, but varies from person to person and will depend on a variety of factors. 

Why Do Dentists Remove Wisdom Teeth?

Considering wisdom teeth are often associated with prolonged and severe pain that can affect other parts of the body like the neck, back, arms, and head, it’s natural that people would rather opt to have them removed. But apart from that, you can also experience other oral problems when your third molars finally break through the gums:

  • Impacted teeth – As vestigial features of the human body, these teeth are prone to growing in irregular directions, sometimes even horizontally. As a result, wisdom teeth can get impacted. The term “impacted” means a tooth has not “erupted” or broken through the gums because it has no space to grow.
  • Infection – Impacted wisdom teeth can have a high risk of infection because their irregular growth creates pockets in the gums where bacteria can thrive.
  • Cavities – Given the irregular way third molars grow and the cramped space where they erupt, food particles can easily get trapped around the third molars. Unfortunately, these same reasons also make it hard to brush the area around the molars. As a result, wisdom teeth can often develop cavities.
  • Shifting teeth – Wisdom teeth typically emerge when people are about 17 to 25 years old. By the time they erupt, you have fully-developed teeth already occupying a lot of space in your jaw. Wisdom teeth can push and shift them out of alignment when they finally erupt.

After delving into the reasons why they should be removed, you might wonder when wisdom teeth can stay at all. Here are some thoughts:

When Do I Need To Get My Wisdom Teeth Removed?

In 2008, The American Public Health Association announced that the organization doesn’t agree with preventative extraction of wisdom teeth. Their statement followed arguments by oral surgeons that removing third molars when a patient doesn’t have any symptoms that would justify their removal is a health hazard. 

Why did they consider wisdom teeth removal dangerous? The primary reason is that there’s a risk of nerve injury. Impacted wisdom teeth are so painful because they erupt in an area abundant with nerves. Some may experience severe pain not because their third molars became impacted but because they touched a major nerve. Extracting these molars could bruise nearby nerves and, in worst-case scenarios, permanently damage them. 

As a result, even though wisdom tooth extraction is a standard procedure, some dentists recommend doing it only when necessary. Further, patients should seek out experienced dental surgeons they can trust to perform the procedure without any adverse outcome.

To answer the question, “Do I need to get my wisdom teeth removed?” you should first assess your situation. If you are experiencing the symptoms mentioned above, wisdom tooth extraction will be necessary to relieve your pain and discomfort. It will also prevent your teeth from getting crooked and your upper and lower teeth from becoming misaligned. 

What about preventative removal? An experienced dentist or oral surgeon should be able to advise you whether your wisdom tooth will cause trouble in the future if it isn’t giving you any issues right now. Preventative extraction depends on your dentist’s judgment and confidence in predicting how your teeth will grow. If you’re willing to take the preventative route, consult experienced dentists who have your best interests in mind.

How to Know When Wisdom Teeth Can Stay

Most people would rather go through a major dental procedure only when absolutely needed, but there should be no reason to wait to experience the dreaded symptoms of impacted wisdom teeth. A more reliable method of finding out if you don’t need extraction is to check for the following:

  • Have your third molars fully erupted?
  • Are they healthy and without cavities?
  • Are they in a good position, and aren’t crowding your first and second molars?
  • Are your upper and lower molars aligned? Can you bite comfortably?
  • Can you reach your wisdom teeth with your toothbrush and clean them properly?
  • Do you not experience piercing nerve pain at the back of your jaw?

If your answer to all of these questions is yes, then you probably won’t need to have your wisdom teeth removed. Of course, it’s always best to have your dentist verify all of these. Have open discussions with your dentist and make sure they know and understand your reasons for not wanting preventive extraction. 

Get Honest Assessments from Dependable Dental Experts

Whether or not you seek wisdom teeth removal, it helps to have dental care providers who are honest and sincere in providing quality treatments to their patients. 

Our dental professionals at Advanced Orthodontics can educate and help you make an informed decision about wisdom teeth removal that you won’t regret. Call or text us at (480) 357-4900 or schedule a free consultation on our website. 

wisdom teeth ex ray

Does Everyone Have Wisdom Teeth?

Having wisdom teeth is a known rite of passage people go through. Unlike other coming-of-age events, however, wisdom teeth don’t exactly inspire excitement because they are associated with excruciating pain. 

But does everyone have wisdom teeth? Some people don’t. Others are fortunate that they don’t experience impacted wisdom teeth and the pain and stress that often comes with it. 

So why don’t some people have wisdom teeth while others do? We’ll give you the answers you’re looking for in this blog. 

Wisdom Teeth: The Basics

Wisdom teeth are the third and final molars that emerge beneath the gums. They are called such because they appear when people are at the cusp of adulthood. Most get their wisdom teeth between 17 and 25 years old, just in time to go to college and start living independently. Ideally, a person gets four third molars, two on the upper jaw and two on the lower jaw. However, some will have only three or fewer wisdom teeth, and that’s perfectly normal. 

Most of the time, wisdom teeth must be removed soon after erupting because the jaws are already crowded with fully developed teeth by the time they emerge. As the latecomer, the wisdom teeth adjust to the cramped space, which sometimes means growing in a diagonal position and intersecting with the root of the adjacent tooth.

When a cramped wisdom tooth grows in an odd position and cracks, it becomes impacted. An impacted wisdom tooth is a big problem because bacteria can make its way through the crack and cause an infection. Since the jaw has so many nerve endings, the infection can aggravate them and cause intense, sharp pain at the back of the mouth. Worse, the pain can intensify and feel like it extends down to your neck and shoulders or up to your temples.  

Given these circumstances, it’s unsurprising that many consider people who appear not to have wisdom teeth lucky!

Why Don’t Some People Have Wisdom Teeth?

The straightforward answer to this question is evolution. The third molars are vestigial structures which means that they, like the tailbone, have phased out their use. During primitive times when humans were foragers whose diets included twigs, nuts, roots and raw meat, the third molars provided extra grinding power for easier digestion. However, as time passed and human intelligence paved the way for modern life – one where our food options are much more processed and easier to eat – our species grew out of the need for third molars.  

A literature review published in Dental Research Journal says that 5 to 37 percent of people today do not have one or more of their wisdom teeth. In addition, research suggests that not having wisdom teeth has now become genetic: people whose parents did not have them or had less than four are most likely to be the same. So now, if anyone asks “does everyone have wisdom teeth”, you can say it depends on their parents, and you wouldn’t be wrong!

However, just because you don’t have the known symptoms of wisdom teeth doesn’t mean you don’t have them. For example, it is possible that you have third molars, but they stay beneath the gum line instead of surfacing in your oral cavity.  

What To Do if Your Wisdom Teeth Don’t Erupt

There are three possibilities if your wisdom teeth don’t erupt:

  1. You don’t have third molars.
  2. You have third molars, but they won’t emerge.
  3. You have third molars that can’t erupt and might become impacted.

If you’ve passed your late teens and early 20s without incident, you can assume that your third molars are staying where they currently are. Just be observant of any changes in the future, like sudden pain in the back of your jaw or a toothache, even though you regularly visit the dentist and don’t have cavities. Those could signal a late eruption.

What happens if your molars become impacted? First, you’ll need to consult your dentist and have x-rays of your jaw taken. Next, they need to determine if your molars must be extracted. Wisdom teeth extraction is a delicate procedure that must be done with the utmost care, hence the need for x-ray visuals. If you’re lucky, your dentist might determine that your third molars are fine where they are and removing them won’t be necessary.  

When Is Extraction Necessary?

Besides getting rid of the pain, wisdom tooth extraction is necessary when it disrupts the rest of your teeth. They have trouble erupting in the first place because there’s not enough room for them in the oral cavity. If they force their way through the gums, they can also break apart or crack the adjacent molars. It would be bad if you end up with two impacted teeth, so while your dentist can still prevent it, expect them to recommend an extraction. 

Extracting third molars will also prevent your teeth from becoming misaligned. So if you want to maintain your teeth’s current alignment, you may have to have your third molars removed if they emerge.

Get Gentle Dental Care From Advanced Orthodontics

Each person has a different situation regarding their wisdom teeth, even with genetics as a factor. It is best, therefore, to consult your trusted dentist’s opinion on whether or not you’ll be better off without your third molars.

You can consult our experienced orthodontists at Advanced Orthodontics if you have concerns about your wisdom teeth affecting your alignment. Our dental practice has provided quality orthodontic care and services in the Arizona Valley since 2005. Equipped with the latest in orthodontic technology and treatment techniques, we can help you maintain your beautiful smile without the excruciating pain of impacted molars. 

Call or text 480.357.4900 or fill out our contact form to book an appointment.

boy with braces

Can Lingual Braces Fix Crossbite?

The existing stigma around traditional braces remains a concern for teens and adults. In certain cases, lingual braces (inner braces) can prove an effective alternative to traditional braces and correct common dental problems such as crossbites.

In this guide, we will answer the following questions:

  • What are lingual braces?
  • What are the types of lingual braces?
  • Can lingual braces fix a crossbite?
  • How long to fix a crossbite with braces, specifically lingual braces
  • Are lingual braces more expensive than regular braces?

What Are Lingual Braces?

Lingual braces (often mistyped as sublingual braces) are invisible, inner braces. Unlike clear aligners such as Invisalign or plastic braces, lingual braces are like regular braces but fixed onto the backside of your teeth or the lingual side.

Because of their advantages, inner or lingual braces are a popular choice among adults and teens.

Some of their advantages include the following:

  • Invisibility. Inner braces are practically invisible, even more so than clear aligners. 
  • Aesthetic. Thanks to their invisibility, patients who prioritize aesthetics do not have to worry about the challenges of wearing regular braces or clear aligners.
  • Custom-made. Through computer-aided and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software, orthodontists customize inner braces to alleviate speech and chewing problems that patients would otherwise experience with premade brackets.
  • Minimum lifestyle changes. While wearing any brace leads you to make adjustments like eating soft foods and learning how to clean your braces properly, lingual braces give those who play saxophones or flutes or any similar musical instrument much more ease than traditional braces.
  • Bite problems correction. Just like other braces, Lingual braces can effectively correct most bite problems.

Can Lingual Braces Fix A Crossbite?

A popular question among those who have bite problems is, “can lingual braces fix a crossbite?” And as mentioned, inner braces can correct most bite problems, including a crossbite.

What Are the Types of Lingual Braces?

Similar to other orthodontics appliances, lingual braces systems vary.

Here are some of the most common types and systems of lingual braces:

  • Alias – The lingual wire is straight and resists bending stronger.
  • Suresmile – Orthodontists can robotically customize the bends or curves of the lingual wire.
  • Incognito – Both the wires and brackets are customized based on the patient’s specific requirements.

Are Lingual Braces More Expensive Than Regular Braces?

While lingual braces can be more expensive than regular braces in some cases, there is no fixed pricing for inner braces as there are a lot of factors to consider.

The cost of inner braces can vary depending on the following:

  • Orthodontists. Depending on expertise and experience, some orthodontists may charge higher or lower.
  • Where you get your treatment. Some places are known for more affordable dental procedures. Patients travel from city to city or even fly to a different country because of this.
  • Your insurance coverage. If you have good insurance coverage, that could mean cutting a significant amount off the cost.
  • Varying options. Opting for custom-made lingual braces for specific needs may mean paying more.
  • The length of your treatment. A minor case would consequently cost less than those needing more prolonged treatment.

One challenge of lingual braces is finding a specialist. Orthodontists who can apply traditional braces are not necessarily able to apply lingual or inner braces, as they require a different technique and training.

How Long To Fix Crossbite With Braces?

Since crossbite is a typical bite problem, many wonder how long it will take to be treated. And as mentioned, it would depend on the severity of your case.

It would be best if you took the time to speak to an orthodontist to discuss your case.

Some orthodontists, however, offer accelerated treatment options to get you started on your journey to a better, healthier smile. This is what we offer at Advanced Orthodontists.

Why Choose Advanced Orthodontics?

Advanced Orthodontics is a premier orthodontic treatment solutions provider. We understand that bite problems such as crossbite can cause discomfort, pain, low self-esteem, and even serious health problems.

On top of an accelerated treatment option that can expedite the treatment process up to 50 percent, here are some of what you can expect when you choose Advanced Orthodontics:

  • Accelerated treatment
  • Free initial consultation
  • Extended office hours (7 am to 6 pm)
  • Comfortable office amenities
  • Friendly staff
  • Ice Cream at each visit
  • Rewards program
  • Flexible payment options

If you have questions about traditional or lingual braces, Invisalign or want to explore your options, we would be glad to help you. Please text or call our specialists at 480 357 4900.

wisdom teeth ex ray

Common Teeth Alignment Problems

When your upper front teeth are relatively forward of your bottom teeth, and the peaks and valleys of both your upper and lower teeth meet comfortably, you have an ideal bite.

Unfortunately, having an ideal bite is not the case for most; instead, many people suffer from teeth alignment problems, clinically referred to as malocclusions.

While a misaligned bite is typical, some cases can have more than cosmetic or aesthetic outcomes. If left untreated, common teeth alignment problems could eventually lead to the following:

  • Bruxism or teeth grinding
  • Premature or uneven wearing of teeth
  • Soft tissue damage when biting cheeks often
  • Weakening of teeth, making them prone to decay or breaking
  • Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems, presenting jaw tenderness, earaches, headaches, and overall facial pain

In severe malocclusion cases, patients can experience difficulties performing vital oral functions like talking, chewing, and breathing.

In this blog, we will guide you through the different types of teeth alignment problems and procedures.

Different Types of Teeth Alignment Problems

Natural conditions or habits can cause malocclusions, including tooth loss, thumb sucking, injuries, prolonged bottle feeding, impacted teeth, or lack of oral care.

Three classes of malocclusions:

Class 1 Malocclusion

A class 1 malocclusion is primarily minor and may be caused by thumb sucking or prolonged bottle use during childhood. In this type, the upper and lower teeth overlap one another.

The class 1 malocclusion has three types:

  • Type 1 – The upper and lower teeth lean towards the tongue.
  • Type 2 – The lower teeth lean toward the tongue while the upper teeth stick outwards.
  • Type 3 – The upper, crowded teeth lean towards the tongue.

Orthodontists may treat all types of malocclusion with minor treatment, likely taking lesser time than classes 2 and 3.

Class 2 Malocclusion

In class 2 malocclusion, the upper teeth significantly stick out over the lower ones. This type can affect the bite and requires early intervention.

Compared to class 1, this type may take more time before the teeth misalignment is corrected.

The class 2 malocclusion has two divisions:

  1. The upper teeth tilt toward the lips.
  2. The upper, central incisors tilt toward the tongue.

Class 3 Malocclusion

A class 3 malocclusion is a class of underbite; it is where the lower teeth protrude or stick out over the upper teeth. However, it is considered a crossbite when only several upper and lower teeth overlap.

The class 3 malocclusion has three types:

  • Type 1 – The upper and lower teeth form an irregular arch shape.
  • Type 2 – The lower front teeth lean toward the tongue.
  • Type 3 – The upper teeth lean toward the tongue with an abnormal arch shape.

Malocclusions often present themselves as the following:

  • Spacing – The excessive space between several teeth.
  • Diastema – A spacing problem where there is space between two adjacent teeth, commonly the front teeth.
  • Overcrowding – A common condition caused by a lack of space between several teeth, resulting in crowded, crooked teeth.
  • Overjet – The upper front teeth lean over the lower front teeth horizontally.
  • Open Bite – The lower front teeth excessively bite into the roof of the mouth.
  • Crossbite The abnormal biting of one or several groups of teeth, this misalignment can affect upper and lower teeth.
  • Underbite – Also referred to as an anterior crossbite, the lower front teeth are arranged more forward than the upper front teeth.
  • Impacted tooth – The tooth cannot naturally erupt out of the gum, needing extraction or exposure, commonly followed by brace-fitting.
  • Missing tooth – Also referred to as hypodontia, this results from improper teeth development or trauma.

While some of these can be treated with minor procedures, early dental intervention is the best approach to malocclusions.

Different Types of Teeth Alignment Procedures

Once a dentist examines and confirms a patient’s teeth alignment problems, they will be referred to an orthodontist for treatment.

Braces

Braces are considered the standard treatment for common teeth alignment problems.

Headgear Braces

In cases of severe misalignment that regular braces cannot manage, orthodontists may recommend headgear braces.

Invisalign

An even more popular alternative to braces today is Invisalign. While it is virtually “invisible” and recommended for milder cases, it could prove effective in treating malocclusions.

Cosmetic Dentistry

A common approach to mild misalignment is cosmetic dentistry, where dentists make imperfections less noticeable with minor reshaping procedures. In most cases, patients opt for veneers.

Some malocclusions may come with jaw problems or misalignments. In such cases, the following treatments may be suggested by an orthodontist:

  • Reverse Pull Face Mask. For some cases of underbite, orthodontists may use a reverse pull face mask. A metal brace attached to the face mask is fixed to the upper back teeth, looking similar to a headgear brace surrounding the head.
  • Upper Jaw Expander. Another treatment for some cases of underbite, an upper jaw expander widens the upper jaw to correct the misalignment, as the name suggests. Patients undergoing this treatment use a special key to adjust the wireframe fixed across their upper palate every night.
  • Jaw Surgery. In extreme cases of jaw misalignment, patients who have difficulties performing essential oral functions may undergo orthognathic jaw surgery.

If you are looking to receive malocclusions treatment, explore your options with Advanced Orthodontics, from metal braces to Invisalign.

Advanced Orthodontics offers free consultations and flexible payment plans—talk to our team here.

smiling women holding braces

How Do Braces Fix an Overbite

An overbite can cause you to become self-conscious about your smile. It’s also known to cause many health problems. Therefore, it’s essential to seek immediate orthodontic treatment to lessen the negative effect it has on your wellbeing. The good news is overbites can be corrected with the help of a dental professional. While the remedy depends on the severity of the problem and the patient’s age, orthodontic treatment with braces or Invisalign are almost always involved in the treatment.

In this article, we’ll answer the question: how do braces fix an overbite? This way, you can make informed decisions when seeking overbite treatment options. Further, we’ll answer the following questions:

  • What is an overbite?
  • What causes an overbite?
  • Do braces fix overbite?
  • Are braces removable?
  • How much do braces cost to fix an overbite?

Without further ado, let’s dive in!

What Is an Overbite?

Ideally, there should be a slight overlap of the upper teeth with the bottom teeth of about 20 percent when the mouth is closed. Anything bigger than that is considered an overbite and will require orthodontic treatment.  

An overbite may be horizontal or vertical. Horizontal overbites, commonly called buck teeth, are cases where the top teeth protrude over the bottom teeth. Vertical overbites, on the other hand, are cases where the top teeth significantly overlap the bottom teeth.

Some overbites are more subtle than others, so the best way to know if you have one is to visit an orthodontist. 

What Causes an Overbite?

Crooked teeth and misaligned jaws are often inherited from your genetic background. Children with parents who have an overbite are more likely to develop one, and there’s not much you can do to prevent it. But, again, overbites can be corrected if you seek proactive treatment. Professionals recommend starting the remedy process as early as seven years old. 

Aside from genetics, some habits can also lead to an increased risk of an overbite. For example, prolonged thumb sucking and extended pacifier use in children can lead them to develop teeth deformities. For adults, excessive nail-biting, teeth grinding and chewing on hard objects (like pens) may also lead to jaw misalignment. 

Do Braces Fix An Overbite?

Many orthodontists will recommend braces to fix a misaligned jaw because they effectively treat most overbite issues. 

So how do braces fix an overbite? The treatment process starts with the assessment stage. First, X-rays will be taken to determine the condition your teeth are in, allowing the orthodontist to determine the overbite type and the relationship between the jaw and teeth. Then, the attachment of the braces comes next. This process involves fastening metal brackets to the top and bottom teeth and then connecting them with wires, which are periodically adjusted to straighten the teeth. Once the straightening is complete, fixing the overbite follows. 

Here are some treatment options that orthodontists often use in conjunction with braces.

  • Rubber bands: Rubber bands are attached to the brackets on the upper and lower teeth to apply extra pressure. You can remove these bands when eating or brushing your teeth. Your orthodontist will show you how to attach them for the best results. 
  • Palatal expander: A palatal expander is used if the upper jaw is too small or overcrowded. The expander slowly widens the palate over the following weeks or months. 
  • Tooth extraction: When overcrowding is a significant problem, the orthodontist may recommend tooth extraction to create more space in the mouth. 
  • Jaw surgery: Surgery may be needed to position the jaw correctly. However, jaw surgery is reserved for severe overbite cases. 

Are Braces Removable?

Essentially, braces can be removed by your orthodontist, but you shouldn’t remove them until the treatment is complete. Doing so will only jeopardize the correction process. Instead, the best thing to do is wait for your orthodontist’s recommendation to remove your braces to ensure you receive the best results. 

How Much Do Braces Cost To Fix an Overbite?

The price of braces depends on many factors, but you can expect comprehensive overbite correction to cost a rough average of $4,000 to $9000. It may seem like a significant investment, but the results are worth it. The confidence you gain along with your brand new smile is truly priceless.

Perfect Your Smile With Advanced Orthodontics

It’s important to partner with an experienced orthodontist to fix your overbite. At Advanced Orthodontics, since our foundation in 2005, we have always been passionate about creating healthy and beautiful smiles. We believe every patient who steps into our office is a member of our family, so you can count on us to ensure you get the best possible experience. If you’re considering orthodontic treatment for yourself or want to know the answer to “how do braces fix an overbite?”, you can always count on our team to answer any questions. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation by calling 480.357.4900. You can also fill out our online form to talk to our representatives.