One of the most common questions we are asked here at Jessamine Family Dentistry is why do I need to have my wisdom teeth removed. Simply put, there isn’t enough room for wisdom teeth because our jaws don’t grow to be big enough to have enough space for them to come in. Since there isn’t enough room for them to erupt properly, wisdom teeth tend to come in at an angle or they don’t fully emerge, which causes problems for the rest of the mouth.
Third molars (the wisdom teeth) routinely damage the teeth right next door, called second molars. Dentists recommend removing wisdom teeth before they become a problem and to avoid a more complicated surgery.
In my practice, I see very few people who don’t need their wisdom teeth removed.
Why Don’t We Have Room for Wisdom Teeth?
Our jaws are smaller than they used to be. That’s not because of evolution — it’s because our modern diet lacks certain key nutrients that allow the jaw to develop properly.
One vitamin in particular, Vitamin K2, is responsible for letting the jaw develop by taking calcium in the body and putting it into the bones. Most people don’t grow up eating the kinds of food where you’d get Vitamin K2 — liver and organ meat as well as animal products from animals that eat grass (not grain or corn). The low-fat food craze of the 90s, as well as factory farming, have virtually obliterated Vitamin K2 from our diets.
That’s why, these days, an underdeveloped lower third of the face is so common that it has become the norm. Our ancestors and small tribes not eating the modern diet had great jaw development with room for all 32 teeth to come in straight.
So, how do you know if your jaw developed fully? It depends on your childhood. Eating raw, crunchy foods rich in the nutrients found in organ meats and grass-fed animal fats are what stimulate proper jaw development. Nowadays, childhood diets are heavy in soft, nutrient-poor foods like applesauce and Goldfish crackers. Bottlefeeding and sippy cups can also hinder proper jaw development. Our diets have gotten too soft and our jaws aren’t developing fully due to lack of use
A really good book that addresses many of these issues is The Dental Diet written by Dr Steven Lin. In his book he explores the work of Dr. Weston Price who was a dentist and researcher back in the 1930’s. Many of Dr. Prices theories about growth and development have come true today. Much of the orthodontic problems and need for oral surgery are nutritional in nature. We are not getting the nutrition to optimize the growth and development of our jaws. The doctors at Jessamine Family Dentistry are trained to not only take out teeth painlessly and efficiently but also look for crowding issues caused by nutrition. Schedule a consult with Dr. Pat or Dr. Dan to discuss what your oral surgery needs may be.