Wisdom teeth removal is a common dental procedure for many young adults and teens and is one of the most common surgeries that people undergo. The pain associated with developing wisdom teeth is one that many people experience. Sometimes this pain goes away as the teeth erupt, but other times the condition results in the need to have a wisdom teeth extraction procedure.
Why Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed?
Sometimes wisdom teeth may appear completely healthy without any form of decay, yet cause many problems due to their positioning and how they related to the adjacent teeth. If a wisdom tooth is impacted against the next molar, it can cause decay or trauma to the adjacent tooth. Their positioning often makes them difficult to keep clean, leading to dental decay even in patients that have very good oral hygiene. If the tooth is only partially erupted, food and bacteria may become impacted under the gums, causing infections, abscesses, bone loss and gum disease. Wisdom tooth extraction rids the body of the decay and makes these areas easier to keep healthy and clean, preventing the spread of dental disease to other teeth.
The American Dental Association recommends wisdom teeth removal when the following conditions exist:
- Damage to adjacent teeth
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
Most people will become aware of issues regarding their wisdom teeth due to discomfort, pain or swelling in the back of the mouth. A visit with their dentist will typically include an x-ray of the entire jaw so that the development of the wisdom teeth can be observed, as well as any pathology around the area.
Wisdom tooth extraction is one of the most common dental surgical procedures that is performed. Your dentist will only recommend this procedure if other alternatives to maintaining oral health and comfort do not exist.
Dentists choose to perform extractions as last resort, when dental disease just can’t be avoided or corrected. Depending on how the tooth is in the mouth it may require surgical extraction instead of a simple extraction. A surgical extraction is usually performed by an oral surgeon and may include complete sedation so that the patient is completely unaware of the procedure and enjoys the most comfort as possible. Sedation is usually done using IV drugs or an orally administered prescription sedatives. The entire procedure may only last 30 minutes to an hour based on the current condition of the teeth.