What Are Horizontal Impactions?

There are many reasons why a tooth may need to be extracted. Although the primary goal of your Indianapolis, IN dentist is to preserve all of your natural teeth, sometimes conditions arise, such as a horizontal impaction, where tooth extraction becomes the only solution. If you have been advised that you have a horizontal impaction, you will almost certainly want to learn more about it.

What Are Horizontal Impactions?

Horizontal impactions occur when a tooth can’t emerge above the gum line. Instead, it lies horizontally inside the gums and/or jawbone. Teeth are supposed to align vertically, so this kind of horizontal position makes it impossible for the tooth to function as it should. Most often, a wisdom tooth is horizontally impacted. Thankfully, wisdom teeth are not considered to be essential, so having to extract a tooth of this kind will not negatively affect the bite.

Why Are Extractions Necessary With a Horizontal Impaction?

The individual tooth that is horizontally impacted may cause problems. These include:

  • pain
  • swelling
  • infection
  • formation of cysts
  • alignment problems with abutting teeth

This is why, even if the impacted tooth isn’t painful, it must be extracted.

Why Does This Happen?

There are several reasons why this condition may occur. There may be genetic factors, insufficient space in the jaw for all teeth to properly emerge, late development of wisdom teeth, or another reason. One thing that it’s rarely related to, is oral health. A person may be very vigilant about brushing and flossing and still end up with a wisdom tooth that is horizontally impacted.

If you have a horizontal impaction in Indianapolis, IN, contact Indiana Emergency Dental. We offer a full range of dental services, including treatment for horizontal impaction.