Wisdom Teeth - when should they be removed?
Pain & Infection
If your wisdom teeth are causing pain or infection, it may be best to have them removed soon. Even if you are not experiencing problems right now, early removal is often recommended because the roots of wisdom teeth will continue to mature and become more firmly attached to the bone. This makes removal more difficult, and increasing the risk of complications.
Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Many people's jaws are too small for the wisdom teeth to grow in correctly. The wisdom teeth often become impacted, meaning that they are unable to fully erupt in a normal and upright position in the mouth. They may even come in "sideways" and grow into the tooth next to it. This condition causes pain, infection, crowding and more.
Because wisdom teeth are so far back in the mouth, they are difficult to keep clean which can lead to decay of the wisdom teeth and surrounding teeth. Problems from wisdom teeth may be slow to occur, but eventually will become known through pain or infection.
Before suggesting that you have your wisdom teeth removed, Dr. Johnson or I will do a thorough evaluation. This includes an exam and x-ray of your teeth and jaws: including a review of your dental and medical history, an exam of your teeth and gums, checking for signs of infection, and a panoramic x-ray to see tooth structures under the gum tissue. This x-ray will help us determine if problems with your wisdom teeth are likely and helps us determine the health of your jaw bones as well as the location of the wisdom teeth to nerves, and other important structures in the jaws.
As oral surgeons that are board-certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, we are dedicated to quality and professional oral surgery care for each patient in our care. We are always happy to answer all your questions to help you make an informed choice about your oral surgery care. In addition, our friendly business team can help with scheduling and finances. We are here for you!