As a result of decay, infection or trauma, the tooth may need to be extracted to prevent further health complications. A tooth may also be extracted due to overcrowding of the mouth to prepare for orthodontics.

Wisdom teeth only require removal if they are causing, or are likely to cause, problems. If the tooth is impacted (partially emerged), food may become trapped around the tooth. This can lead to decay, gum disease, cellulitis, abscesses, cysts and benign growths. Antibiotics and antiseptic mouthwash may treat these problems, though removal of the tooth is often necessary.