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Well, how old are you? How many do you have? Are they all the way in, partially in or totally under the bone.

I have a few criteria for removing wisdom teeth depending upon how old you are and how much room you have for them. After 30, there are some things I would do differently.

Number one criteria for keeping wisdom teeth is they need to be kept clean.

Wisdom teeth are a different animal than the other teeth. When cavities form in them, they appear to be much deeper than other teeth that have formed previously.

They are the party crashers. All the teeth have partners and they are comfortable together and then the wisdom teeth come in. They can stay at the party as long as a few criteria.

They shouldn’t affect the family that is already there. If there are gum problems because they don’t come in the correct position and they affect the others, you may have to have continuous gum treatment around them if you are going to keep them.

If you develop cavities in them where you can’t reach your toothbrush, they will decay again – great idea to get them out. If you can’t reach your toothbrush back there and you don’t have to see it, chances are the dentist can’t get back there either.

If they are totally under the bone and there is no communication around the existing teeth and are not exposed to oral fluids, leave them there. Check on them every once in a while with a panoramic x-ray to make sure you are not developing a cyst around them and they aren’t causing trouble with the other teeth.

If the position of the teeth is erupting into another tooth causing destruction of the bone and possible decay with the other tooth, have it removed.

Of course, every dentist has their own opinion of them. If you decide to keep them, keep them clean.