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Most people need their wisdom teeth removed because their mouth isn’t large enough to hold these third molars. This often results in the wisdom teeth only partially erupting, becoming impacted between the jaw and gum line. These impacted wisdom teeth can create several dental health problems.

Gum Disease

Partially impacted wisdom teeth create the perfect food trap. When food and plaque gather under the flap of the gum around the wisdom tooth, it causes pericoronitis. The gums become infected, which can spread to the jaw, neck, and cheeks.

Tooth Crowding and Damage

Wisdom teeth often grow crookedly, even the ones that are fully impacted under the gum line. The crooked growth can result in the wisdom tooth pressing against adjacent teeth. The pressure moves the tooth to crowd against others; it can also damage the tooth.


Impacted wisdom teeth are not only perfect food traps, but are very difficult to clean. This is a bad combination that often creates cavities in wisdom teeth.

Cysts and Tumors

Because of impacted wisdom teeth, a fluid-filled sack could grow in the jaw. This is a cyst that can harm teeth, nerves, and the jawbone. Though more rare, a tumor could also develop in the jaw because of wisdom teeth problems.