Wisdom teeth come in last, between 17-25 years of age. If there is enough space in the jaw for these third molars, you can make full use of them. On the other hand, they may be impacted, squeezed beneath the second molars, leading to pain and damage to surrounding teeth and the jaw. In this latter case, misalignment of the teeth ensues as they begin to crowd each other and struggle for space. In scenarios like this, extraction of the wisdom teeth by one of our Placerville dentists is the best course of action.
What to Do With Problem Wisdom Teeth
The tooth decay or bone loss that happens in the impacted areas of the mouth means you should not keep impacted wisdom teeth any longer than necessary. Time does not fix this problem — it only makes it worse. Taking them out is the safest and least expensive procedure. Therefore, wisdom teeth should be extracted in any of the following circumstances:
- The impacted wisdom teeth are damaging or crowding nearby second molars.
- Twisted or misaligned teeth are forming due to crowding.
- Cysts are forming, resulting in bone loss or infection.
- Gum disease and periodontitis are caused by impacted wisdom teeth.
The procedures necessary for extraction depend on each patient’s individual circumstances. Our Placerville family dentists assess the progress and health of your wisdom teeth during your regular dental visits and advise you appropriately. X-rays show impacted teeth long before they affect your dental health, giving us time to discuss and decide the best course of treatment.
Wisdom Teeth Extraction
With local anesthesia or sedation, removal of wisdom teeth takes about one hour. Recovery takes a few days and our dental team provides home after-care instructions to make you as comfortable as possible. It’s very important to follow these to avoid infection and promote complete healing. It is definitely recommended to eat soft foods only, avoid drinking from a straw, and refrain from smoking in recovery.
Some patients delay wisdom teeth extraction because their jaw doesn’t hurt. This choice ignores the fact that our dentist’s recommendations to extract wisdom teeth prevents damage and expense that surely comes when these impacted molars are left in place. And remember that the younger the patient, the faster the bone and gums heal from the procedure. So be wise and don’t procrastinate on wisdom teeth extraction! Contact the Placerville Dental Group to find out if wisdom teeth extraction needed in your case.