Wisdom Teeth Removal
If you are a teen or young adult, or you are experiencing complications from your third molars, you should consider having your wisdom teeth removed. This common procedure is important for optimal oral health.
Dentists refer patients to our practice for surgical removal of wisdom teeth because of the expertise and experience of our surgeons. We also have a dedicated surgical facility with the most advanced equipment available for optimal patient safety and comfort.
The Benefits of Wisdom Teeth Removal
Most people develop 32 permanent teeth over their lifetime. Typically, the last four teeth to erupt from the gums are the third molars, or “wisdom teeth.” These teeth normally emerge between the ages of 17 and 21, though they may emerge as early as age 11.
Patients may require wisdom teeth removal because the jaw is often not large enough to accommodate the third molars. As a result, these teeth can become “impacted”(embedded) in gum tissue or bone because they are unable to erupt, or emerge into place behind the second molars.
Our surgeons recommend wisdom teeth removal reaching adulthood for several reasons:
- As the teeth develop, the roots continue to grow longer and the jawbone becomes denser. This increases the difficulty and complexity of removing the teeth.
- The more established the wisdom teeth become, the more discomfort you could experience following surgery.
- After age 30, people are much more likely to have problems associated with impacted teeth.
The main reasons to consider extracting wisdom teeth are to avoid discomfort and oral health issues. These include:
- Pain and sensitivity around the impacted teeth
- Infection in and around the gums
- Damage to adjacent teeth
- Cysts around the jawbone
- Crowding of other teeth
Removing wisdom teeth before problems occur is always recommended.
The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons has published a White Paper regarding the importance of removing wisdom teeth in patients at risk of developing disease. You can read the full report here.
The Process of Wisdom Teeth Removal
The first step is a comprehensive evaluation and consultation, which includes the following:
- Your surgeon will perform a comprehensive examination, determine whether your wisdom teeth should be removed, and answer any questions you may have.
- The options available for anesthesia will also be discussed and your surgeon will make a recommendation to ensure that you are as comfortable as possible and completely pain-free during the surgery.
- We will explain what you can expect during and after your procedure. We will also give you instructions to prepare for the day of your surgery.
When you come back for your surgery, you will be seated in a surgical suite with sophisticated monitoring equipment, which is important for your safety. If you have opted to have sedation, your surgeon will administer the anesthesia and you will feel as though you are falling asleep. The surgical procedure will be performed while you are sedated and when the surgeon has finished your surgery, you will start to wake up slowly.
After your procedure, you will go home with post-operative instructions, which we will also have discussed during your initial consultation. Click here for detailed post-surgical instructions.
Your surgeon will call you the evening of your surgery to make sure you are doing well and answer any questions. One of our surgical assistants will also call you a few days later to see how your recovery is going. Most patients recover within a few days and can resume normal activities within a week.
However, if you do experience more than minor discomfort, your surgeon will want to see you for a post-op exam to evaluation your situation and recommend any necessary changes to your post-surgical instructions.