Wisdom Teeth

Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?

Posted on Posted in Health

If you’ve ever visited the dentist because of wisdom teeth pain, you will no doubt be asking yourself why it is we have them. Why, if in most cases you need to get them removed, do they grow and cause a significant amount of pain? Many people will be all too familiar with wisdom teeth laying dormant for years, only to emerge and create nothing but pain, discomfort, and inflammation. They serve no purpose, so why are they there?

There is a prevailing theory amongst anthropologists and the dentist workforce that wisdom teeth only exist because of our ancestors’ early diet. Before we began to consume softer foods and started to use knives and forks, we had to rely on our teeth to grind, crunch, and break foliage, berries, nuts, and other natural ingredients.

We now live in a more convenient age, and wisdom teeth are now redundant. In fact, you can almost call wisdom teeth a vestigial organ – something you no longer need in your body because of modern conveniences and technological advancements.

Why Do Wisdom Teeth Take So Long to Appear?

Between age 17 and 25, most people will find themselves calling their dentist for wisdom tooth extraction. This time of your life tends to be the most common for wisdom teeth to erupt through the surface – even if they’ve been growing under your gum line for some time. The reason for them appearing so late is that, like most teeth, they grow on a timeline.

(more…)