Not having enough room in your mouth for the third molars to erupt completely can cause a number of problems. It is much better to have wisdom teeth removed by an oral surgeon before the root structure has developed fully. That’s why wisdom teeth removal Phoenix is recommended for young people in their teens or twenties. Early evaluation and treatment results in much better outcomes, a fact verified by scientific studies.
Why is Wisdom Teeth Removal Recommended for Young Adults?
In general, healing is more rapid and more predictable with fewer complications when extraction is done in an immature mouth. It spares a person from third molar impactions, which can be painful and even dangerous, due to infections. It also prevents crowding which brings its own issues. This also stops any pressure that the third molars might put on the existing teeth. This procedure is one of the most effective means of preventing future oral health problems.
Fortunately, technology and medical knowledge have advanced to the point that patients experience minimal post-operative discomfort and rapid healing. This makes it a win-win for patients. The procedure is brief, and the return to normal living is remarkably fast.
Why is it Harder to Remove Wisdom Teeth from a Mature Mouth?
A mature mouth has experienced lengthening of the roots while the jaw bone becomes more dense. When impacted wisdom teeth have to be removed later than age 30, the post-operative procedure lasts longer. There’s an increase in complications. For instance, an opening between the sinus and upper teeth is a greater possibility as is damage to the sensory nerve near the lower teeth. Recovery and healing take longer with a greater chance of infection.
If you have not had impacted wisdom teeth removed by your early twenties and they are now completely impacted in bone, you need solid advice about making the next move. Ask an oral surgeon. Call our office for an appointment.
How do Wisdom Teeth Harm a Patient’s Oral Health?
When third year molars are left in place, patients are more likely to experience:
- Infection: Pericoronitis is a localized gum infection; the result is recurrent pain, swelling and problems with chewing or swallowing – or both.
- Cyst Formation: Cysts, fluid-filled sacks, may develop inside the jawbone. Over time they expand and destroy adjacent jawbone and can even harm teeth on occasion. Rare incidents of tumors have been reported. All of this can be avoided by ensuring that wisdom teeth removal is done on time.
- Increased Crowding: Impacted wisdom teeth create a situation of crowding of your teeth. Unfortunately this is most clearly seen in the front teeth, mostly on the lower row of teeth.
- Damage to Adjacent Teeth: Insufficient room to clean around the third and second molars can lead to gum disease, bone loss, and tooth decay.
- Greater Difficulty During Oral Surgery: Wisdom teeth removal is a more difficult procedure after a person’s mouth has fully matured.
What Happens During Wisdom Teeth Removal Gilbert?
The wisdom teeth removal Gilbert procedure takes between 30 minutes and an hour. However, you should plan on being here for about 90 minutes for surgical preparation and in-office recovery.
It is vitally important that you do not eat or drink anything at least six hours or longer prior to the surgery – other than necessary prescription medications with a sip of water. If you have anything in your stomach, you increase your risk for serious anesthetic complications such as nausea and vomiting. You should not attempt to cut this close by having a large meal exactly six hours prior. If you have eaten too much, too recently, we will reschedule the procedure.
We use state of the art sterilization and infection control techniques throughout, and we will make sure you are as comfortable as possible from the beginning. If you will be sedated, we generally place the IV in your left arm in a nearly painless procedure that creates best delivery of your medication. You will receive local anesthesia afterwards to make your recovery as comfortable as possible as you travel home to rest. You will be sleepy for much of the day.
At your consultation, you will learn about the various options for anesthesia to choose from. Many patients want to be unaware of the experience while having wisdom teeth removed and choose to be totally sedated.
The office staff at Desert Valley Oral Surgery has superlative training, licensing and experience to provide all types of anesthesia, offered in the safest environment possible, using the most modern monitoring equipment. The Board of Dental Examiners inspects the Surgical Care Team, our office facilities and doctors on a regular basis to ensure the highest level of safety and competence.
Medications for minimizing post-operative pain and swelling will be available on the day of your procedure. At your consultation, we may write a prescription for pain medication that you can fill in advance of the surgery to have it ready when you might need it.
Before the Procedure
You will need to have an adult with you when you have your wisdom teeth removed and with you for the remainder of the day – someone who can drive you home following the surgery and care for you as you recover.
It is very important that you do not eat or drink anything prior to your surgery. Anything in your stomach increases the risk for serious anesthetic complications.
We perform all outpatient surgery under medically appropriate anesthesia for greatest patient comfort. Our surgeons are trained, licensed and have long-time experience in applying various kinds of anesthesia or patients.
Recovery After Procedure
After the procedure, there’s a brief wait while the office staff determines if you are ready to be taken home. The postoperative kit you receive upon discharge includes instructions, a prescription for pain medication, antibiotics and a scheduled follow-up appointment for a week out. It is good to limit your activities for a few days and focus on rest and relaxation for better recovery.
Please follow the post-operative instructions we give you closely. This will help you remain as comfortable as possible during the first days as you recover. Following tooth extraction, you have sutures in the gum at each removal site. When you bite down on the gauze placed in your mouth, you help control the bleeding.
If you were sedated, you will be comfortable and drowsy when you leave the office. The local anesthesia will wear off a few hours after your oral surgery. Each person reacts differently to surgery, and post-operative pain can range from mild discomfort to severe pain. You should use non-narcotic anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen first. If the pain is too great, then you can use the prescription pain medication. In some cases the local anesthesia might last until the following day. To be safe, do not drive for at least 24 hours.
Your diet following the surgery should start with clear liquids such as gelatin and broth. However, dairy products on the day of surgery may cause nausea and vomiting as they interact with the anesthetic and pain medication. You will want to avoid yogurt, ice cream or milkshakes until the day after. Do not use a straw because the act of sucking discourages healing and can pull at the stitches in your mouth.
For the first or second day after surgery you may notice minor bleeding and pain. If so, placing a towel over your pillowcase will help prevent getting blood on it. During normal recovery you might experience a sensation of your gums feeling swollen, or pulling away from your teeth. This will only last a few days.
An icepack in a towel or covering should be used against the jaws to prevent and/or reduce swelling. Keep in mind that swelling will be largest on the second day and begin to go down from there.
By day two, you can gradually increase to more substantial food as your mouth and body permit.
By day three, you will find that your jaw muscles are stiff, making it difficult to open your mouth normally. Applying moist heat to your face when this happens will allow your muscles to relax so that you can open wider.
At three to five days, you should be ready to resume normal social, academic or athletic activities. Any stitches used in your surgery will dissolve on their own without you needing to have them removed.
Possible Complications and Discomfort
Our assistants will review your post-operative instructions with your escort following the procedure (you will not be feeling up to it). It is important that you follow these instructions closely: doing so will make you most comfortable over your recovery period. Temporary problems might include stiffness in the jaws, chafing around the corners of your lips, facial bruising and blood oozing from the extraction sites. Reading the post-operative instruction sheet will answer most questions – otherwise, please feel free to call us.
Complications or unanticipated results can arise in any medical procedure. That’s part of the reason for having an escort to take you home and look after you. In the case of wisdom tooth extraction, possible delayed healing, infection and post-operative numbness or tingling in your lip, chin, or tongue can occur. Other worries are sensory nerve damage, sinus communication, infections and dry sockets. The oral surgeon will review relevant post-operative events with you and answer any questions during your follow-up office visit.
Sensory Nerve Damage:
A lower-jawbone nerve supplies feeling to your lower lip, chin and tongue, and often lies close to the roots of the lower wisdom teeth. On occasion the nerve can be injured – especially with older patients. You may notice a tingling or numbness in the lower lip, chin or tongue. This is usually temporary and will cure itself over a period of weeks or months. Rarely does this result in a permanent condition, but we want you to be aware of this possibility before consenting to surgery. This scenario is less likely between the ages of 12 and 18 because these roots are shorter and not so close to the nerve.
Since your sinuses are close to your upper wisdom teeth, oral surgery might create an opening. If an opening appears it will usually close spontaneously, but you will want to follow our instructions, such as not blowing your nose for a couple of days following the surgery – wipe but don’t blow. If you have to sneeze, keep your mouth open and do it into a tissue. You want to avoid any pressure to the sinus area, which may dislodge the healing blood clot. If you find this condition occurring following surgery, please contact us. Only rarely will an additional procedure be necessary to close the opening. Removal at an earlier age when the roots are not fully developed reduces the chances of this happening.
The most common problem following dental surgery is dry sockets, which arises due to premature loss of a blood clot in the empty tooth socket. Evidence indicates this happens most often with people who smoke or are taking birth control pills. This condition can affect both jaws but occur most often in the lower jaw on the third to the fifth day. If so, you would feel a deep, dull, continuous aching in the affected area or areas. You might notice it first starting in the ear as it radiates down toward the chin.
The symptoms often begin in the middle of the night and the pain medication you are taking may not help. To treat this, we might change your prescription. It might also help to place a medicated dressing in the empty tooth socket to decrease the pain and protect the open socket from food particles. One dressing is usually good for reducing pain for a day or two, so you would change the dressing as needed for five to seven days. When you have been pain free for two or three days, you can discard the dressings.
The dressings do not accelerate healing. They are for pain control. The socket will heal on its own, but the medication alleviates the pain. Possibly you will receive an irrigation device to help you keep food particles from lodging in the socket when you are finished with the dressings.
As with any surgery, post-operative infections can occur. If so, contact us to schedule an office visit and clinical examination. Quite often a one-week course of antibiotics will resolve the situation. If not, we will drain and clean the area. If prescribed antibiotics, please take the whole course of treatment. Please note that antibiotics can make birth control pills ineffective; you will want to take appropriate precautions.
Questions and Answers About Wisdom Teeth Removal Queen Creek
What Does Wisdom Teeth Removal Cost?
A number of factors determine the fee for your treatment, including how difficult it is to remove your teeth and the kind of anesthesia that will work best for you. The surgeon will review your x-rays during your consultation appointment and determine the best option for anesthesia. At that point, we can provide an accurate estimate. Each insurance company policy is different regarding how much coverage is available for this surgical procedure. We will work with you to get maximum insurance coverage to defray your wisdom teeth removal costs.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth — third molars — are usually the last teeth to develop. They emerge in the back of your mouth behind the second molars. They develop fully during the middle teenage years or early twenties. The idea was that this time in a person’s life signaled the onset of maturity and the gaining of wisdom.
How is the Problem Diagnosed?
An oral surgeon uses a panorex – a special x-ray of your mouth and jaws — to determine whether you would benefit from wisdom teeth removal. This will reveal whether the budding teeth are impacted or whether there is room for them to erupt normally. It also helps determine how difficult removal would be.
When Should a Teen Be Evaluated?
The first evaluation generally comes in the mid-teenage years. Based on office x-rays, your dentist or orthodontist will refer the teen to an oral surgeon for further evaluation.
What Is An Impacted Tooth?
In many cases, human jaws are too small to accommodate the four wisdom teeth. If these final teeth cannot erupt due to inadequate space, we call them impacted. In other words, they could not erupt into the proper position for chewing and cleaning. That’s when wisdom teeth removal Queen Creek is recommended.
What are the Various Kinds of Impactions?
- Soft Tissue Impaction – When this happens the gum tissue cannot retract for cleaning the tooth adequately because of a lack of room.
- Partial Bony Impaction – The tooth can partially erupt, but not sufficiently to function as it should in the chewing process. It also presents cleaning difficulties.
- Complete Bony Impaction – The jaw lacks any space at all for the tooth to erupt, and it remains embedded in the jawbone, or might be only partially visible. These require complex surgical technique to remove. In certain cases, the impacted wisdom tooth lies in an unusual position and becomes difficult to remove. Sometimes the shape or the size of the jawbone and other facial structures complicate removal greatly. All of this may be avoided with early removal.