How Serious Is an Impacted Tooth?

If you’ve recently noticed pain in your mouth, difficulty biting and chewing, a bad taste in your mouth, bad breath, or any other abnormalities, there are a variety of issues that may be occurring. One somewhat common oral health issue that can lead to these symptoms is an impacted tooth.

Below is more information about impacted teeth, how serious they are, what treatment options are available, and more.

What is an Impacted Tooth?

An impacted tooth generally refers to a situation where a tooth is unable to grow in its correct position naturally. This condition arises due to various factors, such as obstruction caused by retained baby teeth or limited space in the mouth for all the teeth to grow. As a result, the affected tooth may become stuck—either partially erupting from the gumline or remaining entirely concealed beneath the gums.

How Serious Is an Impacted Tooth?

The severity of impacted teeth varies among individuals, and the extent of impaction depends on the underlying causes and the unique growth patterns of an individual's teeth. Some patients may encounter impacted baby teeth, for instance, while their adult teeth grow in without any issue (or vice versa).

While impacted teeth may not always cause pain or discomfort, it’s crucial to monitor them closely and—in certain cases—seek appropriate treatment. Treatment options can include repositioning the impacted tooth to its correct position or, if necessary, extracting it altogether.

What are the Causes of an Impacted Tooth?

The causes of an impacted tooth can be diverse, and they often revolve around problems with space and alignment. Some of these causes include:

* Twisted or Angled Growth
* Overcrowding
* Limited Jaw Size
* An Oversized Tooth
* Genetic Factors
* Accidental Damage

As people undergo two sets of teeth throughout their lives (baby teeth and adult teeth), the likelihood of encountering an impacted tooth exists in either stage of dental development.

Impacted Tooth Treatment

When dealing with an impacted tooth, the most common and recommended treatment is extraction. Following an assessment by a dentist, a suitable treatment plan will be presented. If the impacted tooth has become infected, antibiotic treatment may be necessary to manage the infection before an oral surgeon can safely remove the tooth.

However, not all impacted teeth require immediate action. In some instances, impacted teeth may remain asymptomatic and cause no complications, making extraction unnecessary. Consulting with a dental professional will help determine whether leaving the impacted teeth in place poses a risk to the patient’s overall dental health.

Contact Us

If you believe you have an impacted tooth or are experiencing any discomfort, bad breath, or other oral health concerns, reach out today. We’ll schedule an appointment for a dentist to perform an exam and determine the root cause. If it is an impacted tooth, your dentist will determine the appropriate treatment option to address the issue.


If You Don’t Remove Impacted Teeth