Frequently, these teeth are angulated and this position causes a contact with the adjacent tooth. Thereby, further growth of the wisdom tooth is impossible.
If only a part of the wisdom tooth gets into contact with the oral space this may cause further problems:
1. proper cleaning of the wisdom tooth is not possible
2. the bony part between the wisdom tooth and the adjacent tooth can dissolve
3. below the gum covering a part of the wisdom tooth bacterial growth can be facilitated
Sooner or later these problems can generate painful inflammatory diseases such as an abscess which has to be treated under general anesthesia in a hospital.
After a time of a week or so the wisdom tooth having caused this problem has to be removed through a surgical approach under local anesthesia.
This is the reason why wisdom teeth are removed surgically as a prophylactic measure to prevent the complications described above.
Exeptions from this rule can be made, if the respective tooth is totally covered by a bony layer which prevents the tooth from getting into contact with the oral environment. This situation occurs more frequently in the upper compared to the lower jaw.
Ideally, a surgical wisdom tooth removal is performed at an age below 25 years. In adults older than 25 wisdom tooth surgery can be difficult, especially when the tooth is impacted in the surrounding bone.
Cost guarantees for this kind of surgical treatment may be obtained from health insurance companies in Switzerland only under very special conditions.
Here you can see an example of an elderly male patient with a big cyst originating from an impacted wisdom tooth. In this case, the health insurance covered the costs of surgery and the diagnostic measures such as this x-ray.