Wisdom teeth, or third molars, usually begin to appear between the age of 18 and 24. Because wisdom teeth are more prone to problems, dental professionals generally recommend that they be removed. Removal prevents unwanted dental complications, including infection, pain, and oral hygiene obstacles.
There is no fixed rule that states a certain age by which a person must have their wisdom teeth removed. Wisdom teeth extractions can be performed successfully for patients in all age groups.
However, research has statistically demonstrated that there are certain age-related factors that can place comparatively older patients at greater risk for complications. Because of these issues, dentists typically recommend that wisdom teeth should ideally be removed between the ages of 18 and 24 years.
Why is the Age Range of 18 to 24 Preferred for Wisdom Teeth removal?
Since wisdom teeth normally mature (fully develop) and begin the process of eruption in early adulthood, they are often recommended for removal during this time as well.
Why is Age 18 a Good Year to Get Wisdom Teeth Removed?
A mature teenager or a young adult is generally the best candidate for wisdom teeth removal. Patients in this age group are typically experiencing the healthiest time in their lives and can expect a much faster and more predictable recovery than an older patient. The bone that surrounds the molars can be expected to be less dense and easier to manipulate in a patient who is 18 versus a patient who is beyond the age of 30.
Why is Age 24 a Good Year to Get Wisdom Teeth Removed?
Choosing age 24 years for the upper end of the ideal age range for wisdom tooth removal is based on the fact that the dentist wants to remove the tooth within that timeframe when their patient’s risk for complications is at a minimum.
With age come more complete root formation and other physiologic factors that both potentially increase the difficulty of the wisdom tooth extraction process and affect the patient’s post-surgical resiliency. In regards to these issues, studies have suggested that age 24 years is a good cutoff point
How does age impact complications of wisdom tooth extraction?
Numerous wisdom teeth studies have confirmed that, as a rule of thumb, relatively older patients experience a greater incidence of complications with the surgical process, postoperative recovery and the post-surgical healing process than comparatively younger patients do. The most common complications being those same ones associated with wisdom tooth extractions in general: dry sockets (alveolar osteitis), root fracture and nerve damage (paresthesia).
There can be numerous factors involved that help to create this age-related effect. They include increased bone density and more complete wisdom tooth root formation with older patients, both of which tend to increase the surgical difficulty of an extraction. Also, with age, people typically experience a generalized reduced capacity for healing.
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