The existence of wisdom teeth

Evolution is selectively choosing its favourites, and cursing the rest of us with wisdom teeth

a close-up shot of a pile of teeth
PHOTO: Tima Miroshnichenko / Pexels

By: Karissa Ketter, News Editor

I’ll say it: wisdom teeth are ridiculous. Why are they even called “wisdom” teeth? They aren’t so wise growing sideways, are they? A couple years ago, I went down to the surgeon’s office and he removed all four of my wisdom teeth while I had a little anaesthesia nap. For the next few days, I had a purple and puffy chipmunk face while ice packs and jello were my two best friends.

Now, my partner is about to get his wisdom teeth removed, only for me to find out he only has three wisdom teeth. What an absolute scam! Only three!? What about my family, you might ask? My brother doesn’t have any wisdom teeth at all. 

Why did evolution curse me with all four wisdom teeth while my brother gets away scot-free with none!? Mother Nature, c’mon, couldn’t we have split them 50/50 — two each? 

I feel like I’ve been cursed with a life of dental hell. I’ve had multiple gum graft surgeries, braces, teeth expanders, and now four teeth yanked. Both my partner and my brother have had nothing wrong with their teeth — ever

Look, I understand that being able to take care of my teeth is a huge privilege that not a lot of folks have. I’m incredibly grateful that my surgeons have always done great work, and I’ve healed quite nicely. In reality, yeah of course, wisdom teeth aren’t the worst thing to go wrong. 

But come on, Mother Nature. Humans haven’t needed those molars for thousands of years. It’s time to phase them out and move on.