Pericoronitis refers to an infection of the tissue or gum that is located around the top of a wisdom tooth. ‘Peri’ means the top or crown of the tooth and ‘tis’ means swelling of. The most common symptom of the infection is a worsening pain that lasts a few days. The pain usually occurs on one side of the mouth and most commonly, at the back. It causes difficulty in chewing food and most times, even opening the mouth can be unbecoming.
Pericoronitis is a bacterial infection that can be either brought on or made worse by:
The general rule followed is that after two bouts of pericoronitis, one will need to have the tooth extracted. But, the extraction depends on more than one factor. If the tooth is not going to be of any use, for instance, because the top wisdom tooth has been taken off, it is trapping food or is impacted, it is better off to have the tooth extracted because there could be a high risk of complication if the tooth is allowed to remain.
On the other hand, if the infection happened just once and the tooth has now come all the way through the gum, is nicely in line and does not cause any problem, there really is no reason for it to be extracted.
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