what is an impacted tooth

What Is an Impacted Tooth? Diagnosis and Treatment of Tooth Impaction

What is an impacted tooth? It is a tooth that has become stuck in the gums and bone tissue, and it can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. In this post, we’ll discuss tooth impaction and the treatment options available. Stay tuned for more information!

What Is an Impacted Tooth?

What is an impacted tooth? When a tooth doesn’t erupt from the gum, or only partially erupts, it’s called an impacted tooth. This happens when there’s something blocking the tooth’s path as it grows. Impacted teeth are usually third molars (wisdom teeth). They may grow at an angle or get stuck against other teeth. If an impacted tooth isn’t treated, it can cause pain, damage to other teeth, and other health problems. To diagnose tooth impaction, your dentist will order an x-ray. There you’ll be able to see the lineup of your teeth.

Everything You Need to Know About Tooth Impaction

Treatment involves removal of the impacted tooth. In some cases, the dentist may need to remove some bone around the tooth or make a cut in the gum to access and remove it. Impacted teeth are more common than you may think. It’s estimated that impacted wisdom teeth alone affect about 90% of people! So if you’re experiencing pain or other problems in your mouth, be sure to see a dentist to find out if you have an impacted tooth.

Everything You Need to Know About Impacted Baby Teeth

When a baby tooth doesn’t fall out as expected, it’s called an impacted tooth. This can happen when there isn’t enough room in the mouth for the tooth to come through (erupt), or when the tooth is blocked by another tooth, bone, or soft tissue. It can be especially troublesome if the tooth is blocking adult teeth to erupt.

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The most common treatment for an impacted tooth is oral surgery. The surgery usually involves making an incision in the gum tissue to expose the impacted tooth. Once the tooth has been exposed, it can be removed using special dental instruments. However, removing the tooth is not as common with baby teeth. Most often, they can be corrected with orthodontic treatment.

Everything You Need to Know About Impacted Wisdom Teeth

However, not all impacted wisdom teeth require treatment. If they are causing no symptoms and are unlikely to cause problems in the future, your dentist may recommend leaving them in place. To decide whether surgery is necessary, your dentist will assess the position of your wisdom teeth and any symptoms you are experiencing. If you do need to have your wisdom teeth removed, the procedure is generally safe and straightforward. Most people make a full recovery within a few days and experience only mild discomfort afterward.

Impacted Tooth vs Erupted Tooth

Now that we know the answer to “What is an impacted tooth?” let’s compare it with an erupted one! Any tooth can become impacted if it doesn’t have enough room to erupt into the mouth. When this happens, the tooth may become wedged against bone or another tooth, causing pain and potentially damaging surrounding tissue. 
An erupted tooth, on the other hand, is a tooth that has fully emerged from the gum line. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that the tooth is in perfect alignment, it does indicate that it has sufficient space to grow and develop normally.
In other words, impaction usually happens under the surface, when the teeth can’t erupt (emerge) properly. Eruption happens above the surface, and while it can also cause teeth to impact each other, it’s a completely different dental situation.

Do Impacted Teeth Always Require Orthodontic Treatment?

While impacted teeth often require orthodontic treatment, this is not always the case. In some cases, an impacted tooth will eventually erupt on its own, and no treatment will be necessary. However, if an impacted tooth is not treated, it can lead to a number of problems, including pain, infection, and damage to adjacent teeth. As a result, it is important to consult with an orthodontist if you think you may have an impacted tooth. They will be able to assess the situation and determine whether treatment is necessary.

Key Takeaways

So, what is an impacted tooth? Tooth impaction can happen if there is not enough room in the mouth for it to come in (like if the neighboring teeth are crowding it), or if it is rotated. Impacted teeth are more common in the back of the mouth (the wisdom teeth are commonly impacted), but they can occur anywhere. If you think you might have an impacted tooth, your dentist will take an x-ray to confirm it. Once it has been confirmed, there are a few different treatment options.

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The most common is to simply remove the tooth. However, if the tooth is positioned in a way that makes removal difficult, your dentist may instead choose to perform a procedure called orthodontic eruption, which involves moving the tooth into its proper position over time. Regardless of which treatment option is best for you, an impacted tooth will need to be treated sooner rather than later to avoid complications.

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