The question of whether wisdom teeth can be removed if a teenager has braces on is a very common one. To answer that question, lets take a look at some of the facts…

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth are the last molars to develop. They are located on each side of the jaw in the very back behind your already-present molars. Between ages 16-19 years old, you should be able to see them. If you can’t, they may be impacted, meaning they haven’t broken through the gums yet, or they may be completely absent. These impacted wisdom teeth will sometimes need to be removed by an oral surgeon.

When Do Wisdom Teeth Need Removal?

Removal is required if they are going to displace or shift any teeth that have already been straightened by braces or are in the process of being corrected. Impacted wisdom teeth are also best removed before they have the ability to cause any complications with your orthodontic braces treatment. If treatment has not yet begun, you should consider first having wisdom teeth extracted, especially if the teeth are already coming out at an angle.

How Do Wisdom Teeth Affect Braces?

Because of the way wisdom teeth are situated at the back of the gums, they do not exert enough pressure to cause teeth at the front of the mouth to shift. Wisdom teeth can be extracted during orthodontic treatment, though it is less common.

Determining whether to proceed with braces prior to wisdom teeth extraction or after, depends on the age of the patient and the professional opinions of an orthodontist. The additional set of molars do not typically erupt until the later teens and early twenties, leaving orthodontic treatment rarely affected. For those patients looking to straighten their smile later on in life, who have not had wisdom teeth extracted, an orthodontist may recommend extraction before undergoing treatment as a precaution.

When Should I Contact an Orthodontist?

Don’t hesitate to ask us any questions you may have regarding wisdom teeth and braces. Give us a call today!

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