In the past few weeks, I’ve had some great questions about wisdom teeth (third molars) at my practice. So, for a few posts over the coming week or so, I’m going to try to give some great information about wisdom teeth. What are they? When do they come in? What problems do wisdom teeth cause? Is wisdom teeth removal necessary? Is removal risky?
But first, for today, let’s find out if wisdom tooth eruption can cause a fever.
Wisdom Tooth Eruption Symptoms
Early development of wisdom teeth can be seen on x-rays as early as 10-11 years of age. It takes at least a few years for the entire crown of the wisdom tooth to develop. By about 14 years of age, they begin to move toward the surface of the jawbone. Teenagers will commonly notice their wisdom teeth starting to break through gum tissue between 16 – 22 years of age. Some teens really notice symptoms as these teeth erupt. Here are a few common symptoms associated with third molar eruption:
- Sore jaws
- Inflamed or bleeding gums
- Changes in their bite or the way their teeth contact on full closure
So, can Wisdom Tooth eruption cause a fever?
In small children, tooth eruption can bring about mild fever. We are talking about erupting baby teeth coming in during infancy. In contrast, it is a rarity that older children experience fever during eruption of adult teeth. If a fever occurs in conjunction with tooth eruption, it may indicate the presence of infection in the gums.
Erupting wisdom teeth can cause formation of deep pockets at the back of the 2nd molars. Oftentimes, teens and adults are unable to properly access and clean these sites. As plaque, bacteria, and other contaminants collect in these deep pockets, infection can occur. One of the symptoms of severe infection is fever.
So to answer today’s question: Yes, fever can accompany wisdom tooth eruption. However, it is very rare and often a result of infection and not the eruption process itself.
What do I do if my wisdom teeth become symptomatic?
Most often, pain and other symptoms related to wisdom teeth are related to normal eruption. Call your Kitchener Family Dentist to arrange a consult appointment. On occasion, patients experience stinging gums, swelling or a strange taste or odour in the mouth. This often signals a wisdom tooth infection. Again, call your Kitchener Dentist to arrange an emergency examination. In the meantime, rinse with salt water frequently and attempt to floss the area. Waterpiks work nicely for flushing deep pockets and removing contaminants that can lead to infection.
Thanks for reading today!
By Dr. Kyle Hornby, Kitchener Dentist
This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your Kitchener Dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a dental condition or treatment.