Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?

Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?

Posted by INSPIRE SMILES DENTAL on Mar 16 2022, 12:08 AM

Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?

Your mouth changes a lot over time. The appearance of your third molars occurs between the ages of 17 and 21. These teeth are called wisdom teeth because they emerge later in life. Inspire Smiles Dental provides all the information you need, so keep in touch with us.

What Is the Purpose of Wisdom Teeth?

When our back molars become impacted in our jaw, they do not appear to be very wise! They are the last teeth to emerge, and having them was advantageous to our ancestors who ate tough, uncooked foods that wore away their teeth. However, as we cook and soften our food, the size of our jaws has shrunk, leaving room for the last molars to form in the jaw but not enough room to erupt.

Wisdom Tooth and Ancestors

Our diets today are not as harsh as those of our forefathers and foremothers. Modern marvels such as forks, spoons, and knives, in addition to softer food, have virtually eliminated the need for wisdom teeth. Despite this, on average, approximately 65 percent of the human population is born with wisdom teeth, which usually appear between the ages of 17 and 21 years old.

Even though wisdom teeth were extremely beneficial to our ancestors, they can be a bit of a nuisance in the modern mouth. People have evolved to have smaller jaws, and as a result, wisdom teeth are frequently either too large for the jaw or the jaws are simply too small to accommodate them. Third molars are a nuisance in any case because they crowd the mouth. Consequently, these molars frequently grow sideways and only partially emerge from the gums, or they may become trapped within the gums and jawbone entirely.

These impacted wisdom teeth may become chronically contaminated with bacteria associated with infection, tooth decay, inflammation, and gum disease. In addition, their location in the mouth or being trapped beneath the gums makes regular cleaning difficult, if not impossible. Even when wisdom teeth fully erupt, their position in the mouth makes it easy for food to become trapped, causing plaque, cavities, and gum disease.

Although wisdom teeth were extremely important to our forefathers, they are now considered to be a serious threat to oral health. Inspire Smiles Dental can tell you if your wisdom teeth are ready to be extracted by scheduling an appointment at 925-833-9500. Inspire Smiles Dental Family & Cosmetic Dentistry is located at 7739 Amador Valley Blvd, Dublin, CA 94568.

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