wisdom tooth


: the third molar that is the last tooth to erupt on each side of the upper and lower jaws in humans

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Iggy had two wisdom teeth pulled on the day of a show, and refused to pull out of her duties. Lars Brandle, Billboard, 23 Feb. 2023 By Jenkins’ calculations, the outcome was comparable to sedating doses of Versed, a benzodiazepine drug commonly used during extraction of a wisdom tooth or a colonoscopy. David Rye, Discover Magazine, 7 Apr. 2014 The young reader’s docent and narrator here is a talking wisdom tooth, a vestige of a time before cooking transformed the human diet and relieved us of the need for bigger jaws. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, 17 Nov. 2022 The Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Specialists of San Diego are offering free wisdom tooth extraction to two local students in their 2022 Wisdom For Wisdom program. Laura Groch, San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 Apr. 2022 Xin Liu sent her wisdom tooth into the heavens aboard an early iteration of a Blue Origin rocket in 2019. Los Angeles Times, 30 Oct. 2021 Another option for wisdom tooth removal is clinical trials. Taayoo Murray, Health.com, 26 Oct. 2021 Previous research suggested this profound shrinking in modern human wisdom tooth size was due to the advent of cooking or other changes in diet unique to modern humans. Charles Q. Choi, Scientific American, 29 Feb. 2016 Lake Highlands restaurant owner Erin Willis marked time Monday morning in a waiting room while an oral surgeon removed her daughter’s wisdom teeth. Sharon Grigsby, Dallas News, 17 Mar. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'wisdom tooth.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


from being cut usually in the late teens

First Known Use

1824, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of wisdom tooth was in 1824

Dictionary Entries Near wisdom tooth

Cite this Entry

“Wisdom tooth.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wisdom%20tooth. Accessed 30 May. 2023.

Kids Definition

wisdom tooth

: the last tooth of the full set of teeth on each side of the upper and lower jaw in a human being

Medical Definition

wisdom tooth

wis·​dom tooth ˈwiz-dəm- How to pronounce wisdom tooth (audio)
: the third molar that is the last tooth to erupt on each side of the upper and lower human jaw

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