Wisdom teeth are those four permanent adult teeth situated at the back upper and bottom corners of the mouth. When a wisdom tooth does not have a sufficient amount of space in which to grow, it may become impacted. This can result in infection, pain, and possibly even other dental problems. When this is the case, wisdom teeth removal is usually the necessary solution.
A wisdom tooth extraction may be performed by a cosmetic dentist or in some instances by an oral surgeon. In some cases, the dentist may recommend removing wisdom teeth even if they are not impacted in order to prevent potential problems from occurring in the future.
Wisdom teeth are the last teeth that an adult will have erupt or come in. These teeth usually make an appearance between the ages of 17 and 25, although it is possible for some people to never have their wisdom teeth come in. When one of these teeth becomes stuck below the gum line, it could begin to grow at an odd angle and result in a number of other complications. An impacted wisdom tooth could come in only partially or might not ever come in at all.
In the case of impaction, wisdom tooth extractions may be necessary if you experience any of the following:
- Damage to adjacent teeth
- Damage to surrounding bone
- Development of a cyst surrounding the wisdom tooth
A cosmetic dentist may also recommend wisdom tooth removal in order to prevent the gums from becoming vulnerable to disease and to prevent problems with straightening other teeth.
Local, sedation, or general anesthesia may be used when removing a wisdom tooth in order to ensure you are as comfortable and pain-free as possible. The type of anesthesia used may depend upon the expected complexity of the tooth extractions and your own comfort level. During the procedure, your cosmetic surgeon will begin by making an incision in the gum to expose the bone and tooth. Any bone that is blocking access to the subject tooth will be removed. If necessary, the tooth may be divided into sections to make it easier to remove. Your dentist will also clean the site and then stitch the wound closed. Gauze will be placed over the site to promote healing.
If you believe you may have an impacted wisdom tooth and require wisdom teeth removal, or you are concerned about future problems, contact your local dentist office to request an appointment.