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Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt within the mouth. When they erupt properly and gum tissue is healthy, wisdom teeth do not have to be removed. Unfortunately, this does not happen all the time. The extraction of wisdom teeth may be necessary for wisdom teeth that are growing sideways, partially erupted or impacted.  These poorly positioned impacted teeth can cause many problems. When they are partially erupted, the opening around the tooth allows bacteria to grow and will eventually cause an infection or tooth decay. The pressure from the erupting wisdom tooth may move other teeth and disrupt the orthodontic or natural alignment of teeth. The most serious problem occurs when a tumor or cyst develops around a buried wisdom tooth, resulting in the destruction of the jawbone and healthy teeth. Removal of the offending impacted tooth or teeth usually resolves these problems.

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