You’ve been patiently waiting for your orthodontic treatment to come to an end and your braces to come off. You followed all the oral hygiene instructions during and after treatment, but now your wisdom teeth are starting to come in. Will they ruin your new smile?
At Southern Maine Orthodontics, we get this question a lot and rightfully so. With the typical timeline for orthodontic treatment being between about 18 and 36 months, we understand that it would be very disappointing for all that hard work to go to waste. In some very rare cases, the eruption of wisdom teeth can shift the teeth and ruin past orthodontic treatment, but again, this is rare. This is why it is important to maintain a relationship with an orthodontist, like Dr. Chris Murphy, even after treatment has ended. Once your wisdom teeth do come in, it can be determined if they need to be removed or not.
About Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth are the last of the permanent teeth to erupt and typically occur between the ages of 17 and 25 for most people. While most people have them removed, it is not always necessary. In some cases, many people have plenty of room for their wisdom teeth to develop just fine. In other cases, there isn’t enough room in the mouth for wisdom teeth to grow – causing them to partially erupt or become impacted. In situations like this, the wisdom teeth should be removed to avoid causing further issues to the rest of the teeth.
It is important to note that as we age, our teeth begin to shift. Wisdom teeth are often the blame for these shifts, but research at the University of Iowa found that “wisdom teeth do not exert the amount of pressure needed to move the teeth in front of them to cause them to shift.” To find this, researchers placed sensors between patients’ teeth and observed the pressure on them. They did this in patients with and without wisdom teeth present. It was concluded that there was no noticeable difference in either case.
How Southern Maine Orthodontics Can Help
Immediately following orthodontic treatment, we highly recommend wearing your retainer as prescribed after getting your braces removed. It is the best way to keep the teeth in their intended places after orthodontic treatment. For more information on wisdom teeth and braces or to schedule a complimentary consultation, contact our office.