Wisdom Teeth Extractions
Wisdom teeth, technically known as third molars, are your last set of teeth to erupt. These teeth receive their nickname because they normally surface from ages 18-26 when people have more "wisdom". They are commonly removed because there are many adverse effects and dangerous problems that occur if they remain. Most dentists prefer to remove wisdom teeth early for two major reasons: First, the removal procedure and healing are much more kind on the patient when done before the teeth fully form and anchor themselves. Second, it is best to remove wisdom teeth before they cause problems.
In modern times, with dentistry and oral hygiene products, on average people lose less teeth and have straighter teeth than previous generations. Keeping more teeth and having aligned teeth takes up limited space in the jaw. This means there is insufficient space for our last set of teeth (wisdom teeth) to properly erupt and align. These teeth normally become stuck, or impacted, in unhealthy and dangerous orientations. These unnatural positions trap food and bacteria and are difficult, and at times impossible, to adequately clean.
Impacted wisdom teeth if left untreated are prone to the following issues:
Cavities, or decay, on wisdom teeth.
Cavities, or decay, on adjacent teeth
Cysts or tumors (on rare occasions)
Crowding of teeth (research may indicate this is not an issue)
Who can remove a wisdom tooth?
A dentist or an oral surgeon is trained to remove a wisdom tooth. Oral surgeons are specialists that will normally administer general anesthesia so that you are asleep for the removal procedure. A dentist will normally remove your teeth with local anesthesia so you are profoundly numb, yet you will be awake for the procedure. Some patients prefer to be awake and others prefer to be asleep to have wisdom teeth removed. If a wisdom tooth has a highly complex orientation an oral surgeon may be indicated, despite personal preference. For most patients choosing between a dentist and oral surgeon is a matter of preference.
Wisdom teeth removal consultation
At Baseline Dental Practice every wisdom tooth patient has a consultation where we take a panoramic x-ray to evaluate the tooth and jaw. During the evaluation we plan a safe wisdom tooth removal treatment. It is recommended to have a wisdom tooth evaluation in the mid teen years.
What is the process of wisdom teeth removal?
The removal surgery, on average, lasts about an hour and a half. The surgery does not require an overnight stay, and you will be released with post-operative instructions and medication (if necessary), to help manage any swelling, discomfort, and possible infection. Time will be needed for healing after extractions. Initial healing and post operative soreness normally lasts about 3 days.