Wisdom teeth removal is one of the most common oral surgery procedures we do at North Sound Oral and Facial Surgery. In many cases, wisdom teeth removal is identical to any other tooth extraction procedure. Removing an impacted wisdom tooth (when it is still beneath the gums) is a slightly more involved process. In either case, the procedure typically lasts between one and two hours, and many of our patients are back to their normal routine within a few days.
For most people, wisdom teeth erupt sometime in the late teens or early twenties, but they can start to develop beneath the gums much earlier, around age 11 or 12. Wisdom teeth (also called third molars) are your final set of molars to emerge.
Why is wisdom teeth extraction so common?
Most patients simply do not have enough room in the mouth to accommodate their wisdom teeth. Because of this lack of space, wisdom teeth tend to grow in sideways or become impacted, which can cause various oral health problems such as the following:
- Tooth Damage. Wisdom teeth that grow in too close can crown other molars and even damage adjacent roots.
- Infections. If a wisdom tooth is partially or completely stuck beneath the gums, bacteria can form and cause infections.
- Cysts and Tumors. Severe infections are known to cause cysts, or even tumors, to form around your wisdom teeth. If not treated promptly, damage to the surrounding bone tissue can occur.
- Shifting of Teeth. When a wisdom tooth erupts from the gums, it can push the surrounding teeth to another position, which can affect the alignment of your bite.
Because wisdom teeth/third molars can develop beneath the gums years before they emerge, we encourage you to attend regular checkups with your dentist so that they can monitor the development of your wisdom teeth. Your dentist can determine the appropriate time to refer you to us for extraction before you suffer costly and uncomfortable complications such as impaction, infection, pain, dental disease, and more.
Why extract wisdom teeth early?
Wisdom teeth are usually recommended for extraction before they have a chance to develop completely. Early removal is done for many reasons:
- If the wisdom teeth have not fully developed, they are smaller and therefore easier to remove. Typically, this also means that the procedure is simpler, the surgical sites are smaller, and the recovery is easier.
- Younger patients are known to heal better than older patients. This contributes to a faster recovery and an easier procedure.
Extracting the wisdom teeth as a preventative measure can save you time, money, and discomfort later.
You’re in excellent hands at North Sound Oral and Facial Surgery in Anacortes, WA. Dr. Pardeep Brar offers the full scope of oral and maxillofacial surgery and is highly trained in wisdom teeth removal. If you would like to schedule a consultation with Dr. Brar, please give our office a call or request an appointment by filling out our online form.