At Apex Oral Surgery, conveniently located in the Belle Hall Shopping Center in Mount Pleasant SC, Dr. Marvil and her staff use modern procedures and the newest equipment to provide a superior level of care for our patients. Have questions about wisdom teeth removal? Here are the answers to the most common questions:
Why Remove Wisdom Teeth?
By the age of 18, the average adult has 32 teeth – 16 on the top and 16 on the bottom. Each tooth in the mouth has a specific name and function. The front teeth (incisors, canine, and bicuspid) grasp and bite food into smaller pieces. The back teeth (molars) grind food up into a consistency suitable for swallowing. The wisdom teeth (third molars) are located at the back of the mouth.
Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt through the gums. They typically appear between the ages of 17 and 25. However, an average mouth is made to hold 28 teeth, not 32. When wisdom teeth emerge, the rest of one’s adult teeth are already well established in the mouth. Without the required room, the eruption of these wisdom teeth may lead to crowding, causing several dental problems. Also, with limited space, these teeth typically do not come in upright like other teeth. Instead, they come through impacted. Depending on the specific condition, most dentists and oral surgeons recommend that wisdom teeth be removed. For the most part, an oral surgeon will choose to extract these teeth as a way to prevent health problems before they start. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to be seen by an oral surgeon before one’s wisdom teeth break through to determine if the mouth has room for them.
Do Wisdom Teeth Have to be Removed?
Retaining wisdom teeth can cause a number of uncomfortable and dangerous oral health conditions. Limited room and impaction means that wisdom teeth are prone to infection and may cause the unhealthy misalignment of existing teeth. Many patients may need orthodontic treatment after wisdom tooth eruption because their teeth become overlapped or crooked.
In addition to orthodontic issues and an increased risk for infection, those who retain third molars increase their risks for developing periodontal (gum) disease. Gum disease, especially advanced cases of it, is very destructive to oral health. In fact, it is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. The most serious problem occurs when tumors or cysts form around the impacted wisdom teeth, resulting in the destruction of the jawbone and healthy teeth.
Wisdom teeth can present a problem in regards to quality of life, too. Those who keep their wisdom teeth are more likely to experience facial pain, swelling, toothaches, and frequent headaches.
When is the Best Time to Remove Wisdom Teeth?
Patients are generally first evaluated during their mid-teenage years by their dentist, orthodontist or oral and maxillofacial surgeon. With an oral examination and x-rays of the mouth, Dr. Marvil and her team at Apex Oral Surgery in Mt. Pleasant can evaluate the position of the wisdom teeth and predict if there are present or may be future problems. Studies have shown that early evaluation and treatment result in an excellent outcome for patients.
Only a dentist or oral surgeon can determine the best time to remove wisdom teeth. Most of the time, dental health professionals recommend an extraction (a surgical procedure where both the tooth’s crown and roots are removed) as soon as wisdom teeth begin to emerge. Our team will help you determine the best time to receive treatment.
What is the Wisdom Teeth Removal Process?
As with all treatments offered at Apex Oral Surgery, wisdom teeth removal is an out-patient surgery performed under appropriate anesthesia to maximize patient comfort and provide pain-free results. Our procedures are performed in an environment of optimum safety that utilizes modern monitoring equipment and staff who are experienced in anesthesia techniques. Anesthesia options, as well as the surgical risks, will be discussed with and explained to the patient prior to the procedure. When performing extractions, our team takes great care to ensure high quality healthcare without sacrificing comfort. Once the teeth are extracted, the gum is sutured. The patient will then rest in the office under the supervision of our surgical team until ready to be taken home. Upon discharge, the patient’s postoperative kit will include postoperative instructions, a prescription for pain medication, antibiotics if needed, and a follow-up appointment for healing evaluation.
Don’t See Your Question Here?
We are happy to answer any questions you may have! Give us a call at 843.790.4667 or complete our quick online form today to reserve an appointment with our caring and experienced team! Dr. Marvil is a leading oral surgeon providing a superior level of care you can trust.