Wisdom Teeth Can Mess Up a Teen’s Smile Alignment

Wisdom Teeth Can Mess Up a Teen’s Smile Alignment

Your teen’s dental health is important to you.  You wanted to set them up for a healthy and beautiful smile, so orthodontics became a part of their lives early on.  From widening the jaw to straightening crooked teeth and fixing an overbite, braces have worked wonders for your children’s smiles…That is until your teen’s wisdom teeth started to come in.

Even in the best cases, the wisdom teeth are going to create some pressure when they come in, just like any other tooth does. But for most people, the third molars have problems erupting: either the teeth are angled in the jaw, pushing against the roots of other teeth, or there is not enough room in the jaw for them to come in.

For people who have already had orthodontic treatment, wisdom teeth pushing at their roots can be a catastrophe waiting to happen. The constant pressure on adjacent teeth can cause the entire bite to shift, throwing off individual teeth and overall smile alignment.

What Can You Do to Prevent Crowding Caused by 3rd Molars?

For prevention’s sake, keep an eye on the teeth while they develop.  Typically, if there is no sign of the wisdom teeth in the jaw by 16 years old, there won’t be any at all. Depending on your child’s teeth and jaw development, you might decide to wait until the wisdom teeth have come in or been removed before you pursue orthodontic treatment.

If your child has already had braces to correct their teeth, but those third molars are causing unwanted side effects, you have two options to bring them back to their more perfect smile:

Braces (again): You could always take another shot with orthodontic treatment. It’s another 12-24 months of wearing stainless steel brackets and wires. For a teenager who has already spent two years in braces, another two years will seem like torture. It will likely affect senior yearbook pictures, as well as other memorial pictures

Invisalign: Before your teen has their wisdom teeth removed, let Raleigh Dental Arts fit him for a progressive set of Invisalign. He should be able to begin wearing them about a week after surgery. The clear plastic aligners can correct the damage from impacted wisdom teeth in just 6-12 months. Since the aligners are clear, they are unnoticeable in pictures as well as in real life. Because your teen can remove them for cleaning and eating, his teeth and gums can stay clean and healthy.


If you have concerns about your teenager’s wisdom teeth and alignment, contact the Raleigh office of Dr. Tarun Agarwal. Using state of the art imaging, we can view the positioning of the incoming molars and determine what steps, if any, should be taken to prevent crowding and impaction before it starts. Once a plan is in place for the wisdom teeth, we can talk to you and your teen about the options for orthodontic treatment and how it will affect their future smile.

Make sure you have the most information possible before pursuing orthodontic treatment or wisdom tooth surgery. Call Raleigh Dental Arts today for your appointment.

Tarun Agarwal

Dr. Tarun Agarwal, DDS is considered one of the top dentists in the country. He is a recognized speaker, author, and dental leader. He has been featured on CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX, and News 14 Carolina. Dr. Agarwal has been awarded '40 under 40' Business Leaders by the Triangle Business Journal. He is regularly invited to teach other dentists around the world and recently built a training center within the practice dedicated to sharing his expertise. Most importantly he is a loving husband and dedicated father of three wonderful children. His biggest accolade was being voted 'Best Dad in the World' by 2 of his 3 kids.