Whether you call them wisdom teeth or third molars, the teeth that grow in the back of your mouth usually don’t appear until you’re in your 20s or late teens, and they can be problematic. You may not have any wisdom teeth, but chances are you have at least one.

People who are lucky have wisdom teeth that emerge in the proper position and in good health, and don’t need to have them removed. However, this is relatively rare. Quite often, wisdom teeth don’t break through your gums properly, and in many cases, removal is a preventive measure.

Dr. Le and Dr. Hoang at Le Dentistry and Associates are happy to provide a consultation regarding your wisdom teeth. Even if you haven’t had any problems, it’s a good idea to find out if you might expect problems in the future.

Common reasons to have wisdom teeth extracted

Wisdom teeth can cause problems even before they erupt through your gums. They don’t follow the old adage “out of sight, out of mind.”

Wisdom teeth can start causing problems at any age. The oldest person on record to have their wisdom teeth erupt was 94 years old.

There are several common issues with wisdom teeth. Many times they get stuck, or impacted, either partly or fully beneath your gum line, and they can’t grow into your mouth. Other times, they come in at an angle and push against your other teeth, or toward the back of your mouth, or even into your jawbone. Sometimes, a person’s mouth is simply too small to hold their wisdom teeth.

The most common problems wisdom teeth call include:

  • Damage to your other teeth
  • Overcrowding, misalignment, and bite issues
  • Tooth decay, gum disease, bacteria growth
  • Sinus congestion, pain, or pressure
  • Damage to your nerves and jaw from infections

Of course, one of the most common problems is significant pain. The bones in your mouth become harder as you age, so it’s not uncommon for Dr. Le and Dr. Huang to recommend removing your wisdom teeth when you’re young, even if they haven’t caused problems yet.

What to expect from the extraction procedure

Before the procedure begins, our staff takes X-rays of your mouth, so we can examine the position of your wisdom teeth and evaluate whether they need to be removed. You can have your extractions done using a local anesthetic or nitrous oxide sedation. Both of these anesthesia options will keep you comfortable during the process.

To remove the wisdom teeth, we make a small incision in order to reach the tooth. This allows us to gently wiggle the tooth free. After it’s out, we stitch the incision closed.

Depending on your situation, it takes somewhere between 90 and 120 minutes for the entire process. Our staff provides detailed instructions for caring for your mouth after the procedure so you can heal as quickly as possible.

You may experience some swelling and pain in the days following the procedure. However, ice usually helps. You should relax for at least 24 hours and avoid drinking hot liquids, smoking, or using a straw as your mouth heals.

Book an appointment at Le Dentistry and Associates today to have your wisdom teeth evaluated. Removing us now may save you pain later, or you may learn that your wisdom teeth are healthy and well positioned. You can book online, or call us at 678-252-9881 to schedule.

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