Do you feel a pain in the back of your upper or lower jaw? Have your gums become sensitive in that area? These may be indications that you need your wisdom teeth removed. If so, you shouldn’t procrastinate. Wisdom teeth can cause a great deal of damage to neighboring teeth if you wait too long.
With an oral examination and x-rays of the mouth, Dr. Falender can evaluate the position of the wisdom teeth and predict if there are present or future potential problems. Studies have shown that early evaluation and treatment result in a superior outcome for the patient. Patients are generally first evaluated in the mid-teenage years by their dentist, orthodontist, or by an oral and maxillofacial surgeon.
All outpatient surgery is performed under appropriate anesthesia to maximize patient comfort. Our doctors are trained, licensed, and highly experienced in providing various types of anesthesia for patients.
Wisdom teeth are the last of the 32 teeth to erupt, which occurs in the late teens or early 20s, by which time the person has presumably gained wisdom – hence, the name. Having wisdom teeth does not make you wise, but they can lead to severe pain and other dental health problems. Many people need to have their wisdom teeth surgically removed when they become impacted (cannot break through the gum).
For gentle wisdom tooth removal in Indianapolis, Contact Indianapolis Oral Surgery & Dental Implant Center for an appointment. Our team is not only highly skilled in oral surgery procedures but also committed to personalized, compassionate care for our patients.
A wisdom tooth is any of the four third molars that usually appear in young adults between the ages of 17 and 25. While most individuals have four wisdom teeth, it is possible to have more, in which case they are referred to as “supernumerary teeth.” Some adults do not develop wisdom teeth at all.
When they are healthy and properly aligned, wisdom teeth can be a valuable asset to the mouth. However, more often than not, they become misaligned (positioned horizontally, angled toward or away from the second molars, or angled inward or outward) and need to be extracted. Even worse, they can crowd or damage adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or nerves.
Wisdom teeth also can be impacted, which means they become enclosed within the soft tissue and/or the jawbone or only partially break through or erupt through the gum. Partial eruption of the wisdom teeth allows an opening for bacteria to enter around the tooth and cause an infection, which can cause pain, swelling, jaw stiffness, and general illness. Partially erupted teeth are also more prone to tooth decay and gum disease because their difficult-to-reach location and awkward positioning make brushing and flossing difficult.
You’ve Been Told You Need Your Wisdom Teeth Out. What’s Next?
The removal of wisdom teeth is a routine procedure in our office, but it probably doesn’t feel that way to you. For many of our patients, just hearing the words “surgery” and “extraction” tends to bring up some fears. Dr. Falender wants you to know that wisdom teeth extraction is safe, quick, and comfortable.
What Are Wisdom Teeth, Anyway?
We each get three sets of molars during our lifetime – the first molars arrive at age six, the second at age 12, and the third molars develop during the late teens and early twenties. Because it is during this age that children become wiser and transition into adulthood, we refer to the “third molars” as “wisdom teeth”.
Why They Need to Be Pulled:
Your mouth was designed to hold 28 teeth, not 32. By the time your wisdom teeth start to grow, those 28 slots are already filled, making it difficult for them to grow in properly. That’s why 9 out of 10 people find themselves with at least one impacted wisdom tooth that requires extraction. Even when properly positioned, wisdom teeth can easily become infected, and are at risk for cysts and tumors.
With Wisdom Teeth, Everything Is Timing.
You may have noticed that many of your friends are having their wisdom teeth pulled out too. Why? That’s because there is an optimal (yet fleeting) opportunity between the ages of 17-25 when the tooth roots haven’t fully formed yet. Thus, the risk of damaging nearby nerves, bones and teeth during this time is significantly less.
Choosing The Right Oral Surgeon for Your Child
As oral surgery specialists with extensive training and experience, we are able to offer a different kind of “wisdom teeth experience” to our patients and their families. We are with you every step of the way and pay extra attention to the most critical parts of your child’s care, including:
- Anesthesia with a variety of options available.
- Compassion and comfort to make the experience as pleasant as possible.
- Home care and after-hours contact information.
- A thoughtful surgical strategy to minimize the need for invasive techniques.
- Careful consideration of timing to ensure the easiest recovery possible.
The Cost Of Wisdom Teeth Removal
The cost of wisdom teeth removal varies depending on several circumstances (positioning, level of impaction, number of teeth) that are unique to your teen’s case. We will discuss all costs with you upfront and can help you determine whether your insurance offers any benefits for the procedure.
The Cost of Waiting
Because it is so common for wisdom teeth to cause problems such as infection, pain, damage to neighboring teeth and, in rare circumstances, cysts and tumors, it is generally recognized as standard practice to remove them in most people during the late teens and early twenties, before the roots have fully developed. Waiting to remove them increases the likelihood of problems and complications should they need to be removed down the road.
Complications of Wisdom Tooth Removal
As with any surgical procedure, there are some possible complications associated with the removal of the third molars. However, since the procedure has been very well tested, these complications (nerve injuries, fractures and injury to the joint) are very rare, and, if the surgery is performed at an early age, the risk is even less.