Your third molars are more commonly called "wisdom teeth." Usually appearing in the late teens or early twenties, wisdom teeth can be functional and useful, but often lack the proper space in the jaw and thus need to be removed.
Wisdom teeth can be misaligned as they erupt from the jaw, which causes the rest of the teeth to be crowded and can even sometimes damage teeth, bones or nerves near the erupting wisdom tooth. Wisdom teeth can lean toward the second molars, trapping plaque and food debris, encouraging cavities. They can also partially erupt, leaving an opening for bacteria to cause infections, pain, swelling, illness and jaw stiffness.
Our office is experienced and trained in diagnosing situations involving the eruption of wisdom teeth. When a wisdom tooth needs treatment, surgical removal is the most common recommendation. This procedure is most commonly done with IV sedation. Recovery time is usually a week or less, with very simple considerations in the patient’s diet and daily routine.