I wrote a post on pericoronitis some time ago, and it remains the most popular post on this blog.

I’m going to pose a new concept for many readers:  Did you know that all of our adult teeth are supposed to fit in our mouths? And did you know that the reason they don’t is because of nutritional deficiencies starting from the time of conception in the womb and carrying on into a child’s adolescence? Crowded, crooked, and impacted teeth are a result of underdeveloped skull, facial, and palate structure. The exact causes behind an underdeveloped skull and skeleton are details for another post, maybe a different blog entirely, or you can overwhelm yourself with incredible information on this site or in this book. However, although other factors contribute, you can be sure that diet plays the leading role in determining both short- and long-term tooth and bone health.

That being said, if we and our mothers all had perfect diets, pericoronitis would be a rare infection. But it is not. Pericoronitis is ubiquitous nowadays because the health of our society has swiftly deteriorated in the last century, thus wisdom teeth have no room to grow straight or emerge quickly in our small skulls and narrow palates. It’s too bad that the time for prevention and healthy bone development is long past by the time wisdom teeth start coming in for most people. Invasive surgeries and removals are not only normal, but expected.

Since wisdom teeth typically grow in crookedly, large pockets between the tooth and gums form as the tooth erupts slowly, partially, or in the wrong direction. These pockets are hard to see and reach for cleaning. They are perfect breeding grounds for infection if malignant bacteria find their way to the area and set up camp. The infection feels more serious than it really is, but it should be monitored because it could easily spread and become a sincere threat to your immune system (although the pain is almost always enough to get your attention). It can last for about two weeks, give or take. The minute your gums feel sore in the area is the minute you need to find a sink, an irrigator, and hydrogen peroxide. A clean mouth and a steady intake of probiotics are essential for overcoming this miserable form of gum disease.

Anyone out there suffering from it right now? My next post will go over some of the more useful, natural ways to soothe the pain and help your body fight the infection.

Dr. Sperbeck, West Los Angeles


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