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Wisdom Teeth

What are Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth that are healthy and properly positioned can be a valuable asset to the mouth, unfortunately, this is often not the case and problems will eventually develop. Teeth can often become impacted because the jaw may not be large enough to accommodate them. They may grow sideways, emerge partway, or trapped beneath the gum and the bone. X-rays will need to be taken to evaluate the shape, position, and condition of the wisdom teeth.



The Reason Wisdom Teeth are Removed

Extraction of the Wisdom Teeth can protect the overall health of the mouth. It is generally recommended when the following occur:

Impacted wisdom teeth may continue to grow without adequate room, potentially damaging adjacent teeth. A fluid filled sac(cyst) or tumor forms which can destroy the surrounding bone and gums. Wisdom teeth can also only partially erupt. This leaves an opening for bacteria, thus causing an infection. TMJD, pain, swelling, or jaw stiffness can be a result if wisdom teeth are not removed. For wisdom teeth that fully erupt, the degree of difficulty for maintaining good home hygiene is extremely high. Flossing and brushing are more difficult, and subsequently decay is more like to develop. Also, erupted wisdom teeth can cause crowding and rotation of the teeth in front of them.



Removing Wisdom Teeth Early

People between the ages of 15 and 30 years old should have their wisdom teeth evaluated. If they need to be removed, it should be considered before the age of 30 years when generally fewer complications occur. Tooth roots are not fully formed at a younger age and the surrounding bone is much softer making the process much easier for the patient. Healing is generally faster when the patient is younger. The bone that surrounds the teeth has a greater capacity for healing before the age of 30.



What to expect From the Procedure

Before surgery we will explain what to expect, have you sign a consent form and give you personalized instructions to follow. These general items make the procedure go smoothly.

Some patients experience numbness or tingling following surgery. Normal sensation usually returns in a period time. Occasionally, a dry socket occurs when the blood clot breaks down earlier than normal. A dressing is often placed in the socket to protect it until the socket heals. Talk to us about any questions that you may have. It is especially important to let us know, before surgery, of any illness that you have and medications that you are taking.

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