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What Is an Impacted Tooth?

Posted on 4/27/2017 by Dr. Brahmbhatt
A woman suffering from an impacted tooth.
To understand an impacted tooth one must understand how teeth grow. From infancy, your teeth pass through the gums and emerge in your oral cavity. Once, what are typically called your baby teeth, are established, they grow and then fall out to make room for permanent teeth. Again, the teeth push past the gums and emerge as adult teeth.

Wisdom teeth, which don't emerge until later teens and early twenties, are most likely to have impaction problems. Impacted teeth happen when your teeth have problems breaking through the gums.

What Causes Impacted Teeth?

Sometimes when a tooth emerges, it gets stuck in the gum and can't break through to completely grow. This could be because of overcrowding, particularly with wisdom teeth, because the jaw may be too small to make room for these late arrivals.

Other reasons teeth may become impacted are that they come in twisted or tilted or are otherwise displaced as they come in. This is a very common problem and many times cause no problems. But sometimes they can become inflamed as they trap food debris. They can cause tenderness in the gums and even bad breath.

How Do You Fix an Impacted Tooth?

If you have an impacted tooth you can take over-the-counter pain medication to relieve the discomfort until you can visit your dentist. If the tooth is causing no problems, it will just stay in place. If it does cause problems, the typical treatment is to remove it. Your local dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon to get the impacted tooth removed.

If you experience pain or tenderness of your gums or jaw, a persistent headache or ache in your jaw, redness or some gum swelling around the emerging tooth or you experience bad breath, when you hadn't had the problem before, you should contact our office determine if these symptoms are a result of an impacted tooth.

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Mitesh G. Brahmbhatt, DMD

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Chicopee, MA 01020

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Our Dentist is located in Chicopee, MA, and proudly serves the surrounding areas of Springfield, Holyoke, Westfield, Ludlow, West Springfiled, Wilbraham, South Hadley, Granby, Belchertown, Easthampton, Northampton, Hadley, Amherst, Agawam, Longmeadow, East Longmeadow, Southwick.
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