Removing wisdom teeth is a widely recommended procedure and can come with many benefits that some are unaware of. Having your wisdom teeth removed can be scary, but the process is safe, especially when performed by an experienced oral surgeon.
At Foley & Le Oral Surgery, we specialize in all facets of wisdom tooth removal. If you are looking for wisdom tooth removal in Boulder, CO, Dr. Benjamin Foley, Dr. Thao Le, and Dr. Dan Foley are here to provide trustworthy care. Call us at (303) 444-2255 or complete the online booking form for a free consultation.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth, also called “third molars, are located at the back of your mouth. They are the last of your adult teeth to erupt, usually around 17-25 years old.
Most people will have four wisdom teeth, one in each corner of the mouth. However, some people may have fewer or even none at all.
Why Remove Wisdom Teeth?
Removing wisdom teeth may be necessary to maintain good oral health. Even if your wisdom teeth do not appear to be causing any immediate issues, it’s important to remember that this does not mean there won’t be problems in the future.
Here are four reasons why you may need to have your wisdom teeth removed:
- Pain. Wisdom teeth can become impacted (stuck below the surface of your gums) and cause pain and discomfort. If you do not have enough room for wisdom teeth, they can push other teeth out of place and even cause damage to the jawbone, leading to intense pain in the jaw.
- Overcrowding. Wisdom teeth can crowd adjacent teeth and cause them to become crooked or misaligned. Removing wisdom teeth helps ensure that the teeth are aligned correctly, making it easier to brush and floss effectively.
- Infection. Unerupted wisdom teeth can create a breeding ground for bacteria, leading to infection and gum disease. Removing wisdom teeth can reduce the risk of developing cysts or tumors around the impacted tooth.
- Oral Health. Eliminating wisdom teeth helps maintain good overall oral health as they are more prone to cavities, gum disease, and tooth decay due to their location at the back of the mouth, where it’s difficult to reach when brushing or flossing regularly.
Why See an Oral Surgeon?
For most tooth removal, you can visit a general dentist. But when it comes to wisdom teeth or third molar extractions, it is usually best to visit an oral surgeon. Here are four reasons why:
- Specialized training: Oral surgeons are trained in techniques for wisdom tooth extractions, including those that are impacted or require more specialized care.
- Qualified to use sedation: If you would like the procedure done under general anesthesia or I.V. sedation, you will want to see an oral surgeon. They are certified by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) to provide this type of care.
- Experience: As most of their work is in oral surgical procedures, oral and maxillofacial surgeons have extensive experience in wisdom tooth removal. This makes them well-equipped to perform the surgery safely and competently.
- Risk of complications: Wisdom teeth can be impacted, infected or poorly positioned. Oral surgeons are highly skilled in addressing such issues and performing even the most complex extractions. They can contend with complications during the procedure, such as a fractured tooth, exposed sinus cavities, or needing to remove bone or tissue.
Wisdom Tooth Removal Procedure
Your oral surgeon will decide which sedation option best suits your situation, including local anesthetic, I.V. sedation, and nitrous oxide.
The procedure usually takes 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the number and complexity of teeth that need removal.
When extracting wisdom teeth, your oral surgeon will perform the following steps:
- Make an incision in the gum tissue to expose the tooth and bone if your tooth is impacted
- Remove any blocking bone to access the tooth root and divide the tooth into sections if needed
- Remove the tooth
- Clean out any debris from the extracted tooth or bone
- Stitch up the incision if needed
- Place a gauze pad over the extraction site to control bleeding and form a clot
Wisdom Tooth Removal in Boulder CO
Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine and safe procedure often necessary for good oral health. If you are searching for an oral surgeon near me, trust the experts at Foley & Le!
Choosing a qualified oral surgeon you trust is important when it comes to wisdom teeth removal near me. If you are searching for an oral surgeon Boulder, CO, call our office at (303) 444-2255 or complete the online booking form for a free consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
In most cases, the risks involved with wisdom teeth removal are minimal. However, as with any surgery, there is a potential infection or damage to surrounding nerves and tissues. Dry sockets can also occur when the blood clot at the extraction site fails to form.
Removing all four wisdom teeth at once is often the best choice for most patients. Third molars can become impacted, cause damage to nearby teeth or crowd the mouth, and increase your risk of gum disease. Moreover, having all four extracted in one procedure will save you the extra cost of office visits, procedures and anesthesia. However, an oral surgeon can assess your case and determine if all four teeth require removal.
Following wisdom tooth extraction, pain and swelling are expected and can last 3-7 days. Your body’s natural healing process will determine the duration of these symptoms. Fortunately, over-the-counter pain medications provide relief for those who may be experiencing discomfort.
Bleeding can be expected to stop within 2-3 hours, but some oozing and occasional bleeding may occur for up to 1-2 weeks. If gauze is not controlling the bleeding, a 30-minute session with a moistened tea bag can be beneficial. If the bleeding persists, please contact your oral surgeon immediately.
For most people, taking 1-3 days off is usually best to ensure your body can heal properly. Taking it easy and allowing adequate rest is vital for a successful recovery.