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Swollen gum tissue around a healthy wisdom tooth



May 21, 2009
I am a 34yr old male who has for the past week have noticed swelling and a little pain in the gum tissue around the inside of my lower left wisdom tooth. Ihave never had any problems with my wisdom teeth, all four came in at a very early age and have been told even if I where to get braces they would not cause a problem nor would they have to be romoved since my jaw has room to support them. A week ago I have notice my gum started to swell almost partially over my lower left wisdom tooth and its a little sore. Even though I am affraid of the dentist I have had two root canals and one molar extracted and all where completely painless. I just would like to know that after a week of rinsing with warm salt water (sea salt) the swelling and soreness is still there. Is there anything you can suggest I can do to get the swelling down and the discomfort to go away? I dont see having my wisdom teeth removed for swollen gums but if thats the case I would like to have some general idea of the process and recovery time and if all 4 would have to be romoved or what.....Please any info on this would be a great help


Staff member
Jan 1, 2005
Hi, this is called "pericoronitis" (you can google it) and it's most common with partially erupted wisdom teeth.
A first episode of pericoronitis, unless particularly severe, is not an indication for wisdom teeth removal. However, if it happens repeatedly, this would be an indication for removal.

You're doing the right thing by rinsing with salt water :). If your tooth, jaw, and cheek are swollen and painful, you should see your dentist right away. He or she can treat the infection with antibiotics.