Pulling wisdom teeth can improve long-term taste function, r
This new study shows us that taste function can actually slightly improve between the time patients have surgery for wisdom teeth extraction and up to 20 years later.

Researchers evaluated data from 1,255 patients who had undergone a chemosensory evaluation at Penn's Smell and Taste Center over the course of 20 years. Among that group, 891 patients had received third molar extractions and 364 had not.

The "whole-mouth identification" test incorporates five different concentrations of sucrose, sodium chloride, citric acid, and caffeine. Each solution is sipped, swished in the mouth, and then spit out. Subjects then indicate whether the solution tastes sweet, salty, sour, or bitter.

The extraction group outperformed the control group for each of the four tastes, and in all cases, women outperformed men. The study suggests, for the first time, that people who have received extractions in the distant past experience, on average, an enhancement (typically a three to 10 percent improvement) in their ability to taste.

"The study strongly suggests that extraction of the third molar has a positive long-term, albeit subtle, effect on the function of the lingual taste pathways of some people," the author said.

Source: https://www.pennmedicine.org/news/news-releases/2021/june/pulling-wisdom-teeth-can-improve-long-term-taste-function
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