What is Third Molar or Wisdom Tooth
Third molars or wisdom teeth, as they are more commonly known, are the teeth which are most often missing, impacted and with altered morphology. Advances in dental anthropology states that there is a reduction in the number of teeth and size of jaws on evolutionary basis for the past 100000 years. Third incisors, third premolars and fourth molars have disappeared already. At present human third molars or wisdom teeth or wisdom teeth often fail to develop, which indicate that these teeth may be on their way out. Although there are some who advice the early removal of the third molars or wisdom teeth, many strongly believe that the retention of asymptomatic third molars or wisdom teeth may be useful in later years as a substitute for badly decayed teeth or may even be useful as a transplant. Development and Eruption of Wisdom Teeth or Third molars
There is great variation in the timing of development, calcification, and eruption of third molars or wisdom teeth. Development of wisdom teeth may begin as early as 5 years or as late as 16 years, with the peak formation period at 8 or 9 years. Calcification can start at age 7 years in some children and as late as age 16 years in others. Enamel formation is normally complete between 12 and 18 years and root formation is normally completed between 18 and 25 years. Hellman reported that the average age of eruption was 20.5 years. In 1962, Fanning reported that average ages of eruption of 19.8 years for females and 20.4 years for males. Early formation of third molars or wisdom teeth is generally regarded as predictive of early maturation but not always of early eruption. Most surveys report that more than 17% of lower third molars or wisdom teeth become impacted. Lower third molars or wisdom teeth normally have their occlusal surfaces tilted slightly forwards and lingually during early calcification. As the mandible increases in length, with bone resorption at inner angulation...
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