Your dentist may refer you to us for the removal (extraction) of a tooth / teeth. Often, this referral is for the extensive training and experience of our specialists, and the goal of minimizing patient discomfort and maximizing their healing. A tooth may need to be removed because it is broken, infected, or impacted in bone or soft tissue. Using our modern equipment, and the broadest available range of anesthetic options, the extraction of very difficult teeth can be performed in a relaxed environment with excellent results.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the third molars, located in the four corners, two in the top, two in the bottom, at the very back of the mouth. They are the last four teeth to develop, emerge from underneath your gums, and “erupt” into your mouth. The eruption of wisdom teeth usually occurs when people are in their late-teens or early twenties. However, in many cases, there is not enough room for these teeth to erupt and fit comfortably in your mouth. As a result, these teeth may partially erupt, remaining partially submerged (impacted) beneath the gums. Alternatively, they may not erupt at all, and remain within the jaw bone. Your dentist may refer you to a specialist to discuss the pros and cons of their removal.
What Problems Can Wisdom Teeth Cause?
Wisdom teeth may erupt into the mouth and present no problems at all for some patients, as long as these teeth can be effectively cleaned. Unfortunately, wisdom teeth can occasionally do more harm than good. If partially erupted, these teeth may be difficult to clean, causing food and debris to be trapped in the area. This can lead to decay, infection, and/or gum disease. In addition. poorly positioned wisdom teeth can adversely affect adjacent teeth. They may cause decay in an otherwise “good”, neighbouring molar. Moreover, upon their eruption, wisdom teeth can force other teeth to move forward, leading to undesirable crowding of the front teeth. In rare instances, the sac surrounding a developing wisdom tooth can lead to the formation of a cyst or tumor, and destroy healthy jaw bone.
What Are Symptoms Of Wisdom Teeth That Require Their Removal?
A partially erupted, or impacted wisdom tooth / teeth may cause the following symptoms, often requiring their removal:
- Pain in the back corners of the mouth
- Tender, bleeding or swollen gums
- Jaw joint pain or aches
- Swelling around the jaw
- Halitosis (chronic bad breath)
- A sour taste in the mouth
- Difficulty with opening and closing the mouth
- Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
What Is Involved In The Removal Of Wisdom Teeth?
The process begins with a consultation where our specialist reviews your medical history, examines your mouth and evaluates your radiograph (x-ray). A recent panoramic radiograph provides the best information on a tooth’s position, size of roots, and orientation relative to other anatomic structures in the jaw. Your particular situation will be discussed in detail so that you understand the benefits, alternatives, and risks of surgery. Additionally, the dentist will discuss various anesthesia options for this procedure, including the possible use of local anesthesia (freezing), nitrous oxide (laughing gas), I.V. sedation (light sleep) or deep sleep / general anaesthesia.
If you choose to have a sedation or general anaesthetic for your procedure, pre-anaesthetic instructions will be provided at this consultation. On the day of your procedure, you will be asked to arrive at the office with an empty stomach. You will need to arrive with a responsible adult who will take you home after the surgery, and care for you. The procedure usually takes about an hour an half, including the recovery time in our office. Post-anesthetic / surgical instructions will be provided after your procedure to promote excellent healing. We are proud to provide our patients with optimal safety, comfort, and care – before, during, and after their treatment.