Removal of Wisdom Teeth

Teens, young adults, and anyone experiencing complications from third molars, should consider wisdom teeth removal.  Patients are referred to Dr. Nellen and Dr. Goeckerman because of their expertise as oral surgeons. The office is a dedicated surgical facility with the most advanced equipment available for optimal patient safety and comfort.

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

Most people develop 32 permanent teeth. The last teeth to erupt through gums are usually the third molars, or “wisdom teeth.” These teeth normally emerge between the ages of 17 and 21, though they may emerge at an earlier age.

Often, the jaw is not large enough to accommodate the third molars.  Without enough room, these teeth can become “impacted” – embedded in gum tissue or bone beyond their normal eruption time.

Dr. Nellen and Dr. Goeckerman recommend removing wisdom teeth for teens and young adults for several reasons:

  • As the teeth develop, the roots continue to grow longer and the jawbone becomes denser. This increases the complexity of removing the teeth.
  • The more established the wisdom teeth become, the more discomfort patients may experience following surgery.
  • After age 30, patients are much more likely to experience the problems associated with impacted teeth. 

Why Should Wisdom Teeth be Removed?

The main reasons to remove wisdom teeth are to avoid discomfort and prevent oral health issues, including:

  • Pain and sensitivity around the impacted teeth.
  • Infection in and around the gums.
  • Damage to the adjacent teeth and possible decay.
  • Cysts that can damage the bone.
  • Crowding and improper alignment of the teeth.

The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons has recently published a White Paper supporting the importance of wisdom teeth removal in patients at risk of developing disease. The full report can be read here

http://www.aaoms.org/docs/govt_affairs/advocacy_white_papers/white_paper_third_molar_data.pdf

What to Expect with Wisdom Teeth Removal

The first step is an initial consultation and evaluation with either Dr. Nellen or Dr. Goeckerman.  Your surgeon will:

  • Complete a thorough examination, review your x-rays and discuss the need for removing your wisdom teeth and any possible complicating factors, such as the position or angle of the teeth or whether they are impacted.
  • Review options for anesthesia to keep you comfortable during surgery, such as local anesthesia, nitrous oxide analgesia (“laughing gas”), sedation, and general anesthesia.
  • Explain what you can expect during and after your procedure. You will also be given instructions to prepare for the day of your surgery.

Your surgery will be performed in an environment that prioritizes safety. The surgeons have years of experience in anesthesia techniques and they will utilize the most advanced monitoring equipment available.  your procedure and employ modern surgical equipment.

Following surgery, you will be provided with post-operative instructions. You can also review detailed post-surgical instructions by clicking here.