Can we prevent wisdom tooth growth?

A study out of Tufts University has reported that unknowingly, dentists have developed potential ways to prevent the eruption of third molars or “wisdom teeth” by using dental anesthesia on children aged two to six.

At birth, all of a child’s “baby teeth” are developed and are typically below the gumline. Even adult teeth have begun to form before a child is born. The third molars or wisdom teeth, however, do not begin forming until well after birth. And as it turns out, there is a statistically significant correlation between dental anesthesia injections between ages two and six and the lack of third molar development in later years.

It’s thought that since the third molar tooth buds are so fragile, the dental anesthesia damages the buds and prevents them from forming into adult teeth. Because wisdom teeth are so often pulled later in life anyway, this may be a preferred method for practitioners to interrupt and prevent the teeth from ever forming.

If you have questions regarding dental development and wisdom teeth, contact your Jacksonville dentist Dr. Tiffany Shields today!


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