Pain at the rear of the jaw, where the third molars (more commonly known as the “wisdom teeth”) are located, can be due to a number of factors.

An impacted wisdom tooth can cause pain merely when it continues to attempt to erupt and there is no room to accommodate it. The gums can become tender, and the other teeth may try to shift to create room for the wisdom tooth, causing pain.

The issue may be more serious, though. Another potential problem is a wisdom tooth abscess.

A wisdom tooth abscess occurs when an infection reaches the tooth’s root or develops between the gum and the root. An abscess can have severe consequences, including a systemic infection known as sepsis, if it is not treated in a timely fashion.

Although you can be aware of signs of an abscess like bad breath and a fever, it will be impossible for you to determine specifically what is causing your symptoms on your own. You will need to consult with an oral surgeon, who can take x-rays and look for other indicators that suggest the cause of your pain.

To avoid experiencing pain and the other negative outcomes of a wisdom tooth abscess, or even impacted wisdom teeth in general, it is recommended that patients have their third molars removed by the time they reach age 25.

Removing the wisdom teeth can prevent other negative consequences like misalignment of the other teeth, which may occur as the wisdom teeth try to push through the gums. Impacted wisdom teeth can also increase your chances of developing gum disease.

Wisdom teeth extraction is a straightforward procedure that can take place in the oral surgeon’s office. Patients will have some sort of intravenous sedative for additional comfort.

If you are experiencing pain in the vicinity of your wisdom teeth, contact our dual degree oral and maxillofacial surgeons at ORA® Oral Surgery & Implant Studio as soon as possible to get a conclusive diagnosis. Begin to plan for the extraction procedure so that you can eliminate your symptoms. Call 312-328-9000 to schedule your consultation today.