Wisdom Teeth Removal Montgomery
Usually when a tooth requires extraction, the patient’s oral health generally depends upon its replacement, preferably with dental implants. The most notable exception to this is the wisdom teeth. Unlike most permanent adult teeth, wisdom teeth are often removed to facilitate the function of the mouth and relieve discomfort. Through wisdom teeth removal, our Montgomery oral surgeons have helped many patients find relief from the discomfort of improperly erupted, or impacted, wisdom teeth.
Wisdom teeth gained their moniker because they usually erupt when a person is between the ages of 18 and 25—a time once known as the “age of wisdom.” Clinically, they’re known as third molars (because they’re the third set of adult molars to grow) and are the last four teeth to erupt from the gum line. The typical adult mouth is designed to comfortably accommodate 28 permanent teeth. With the addition of wisdom teeth, most adults grow a total of 32. While attempting to find space on crowded dental ridges, third molars often push existing teeth out of alignment and may not fully erupt, or erupt at all.
Types of Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Partial Eruption/Impaction—The wisdom tooth has run into the adjacent molar before completely erupting. The gum tissue around the partial eruption can collect food debris and bacteria, leading to infection.
Vertical Impaction—The wisdom tooth has grown vertically (straight up and down), but too close to the adjacent molar, and became stuck before erupting.
Horizontal Impaction—The wisdom tooth has grown horizontally (sideways) against the adjacent molar. Discomfort is often severe until the tooth is extracted.
Mesial Impaction—The wisdom tooth has grown diagonally (at an angle) towards the other teeth, causing severe discomfort.
Distal Impaction—The wisdom tooth has grown diagonally, away from the other teeth. A distal impaction doesn’t cause other damage to the other teeth, though you may experience discomfort in the region of the wisdom tooth.
Bony Impaction—The wisdom tooth has remained within the jawbone, refusing to erupt at all.
Soft Tissue Impaction—The wisdom tooth has emerged slightly from the jawbone and into the gum tissue, but has not erupted and is not visible.
Should I Have My Wisdom Teeth Removed?
Dental pain is often inevitable with impacted wisdom teeth, but not everyone experiences trouble with their third molars. In some cases, all four wisdom teeth erupt in perfect formation, without complication. Some patients who haven’t experienced wisdom teeth discomfort still opt for removal to avoid possible complications in the future. The choice to preemptively remove unobtrusive wisdom teeth does not usually affect the form and function of the remaining 28 teeth. After a thorough examination and consultation, we’ll help you decide whether to remove your wisdom teeth before they have the opportunity to cause trouble.
What to Expect from Wisdom Teeth Removal
Removing an already-erupted wisdom tooth is a simple procedure. After numbing the area, your dentist will grasp the tooth with a special dental instrument and gently rock the crown back and forth in its socket until the connective tissues disengage. Once it’s free, the tooth will be carefully removed. Removing impacted teeth, however, requires surgery and a longer healing period. Following surgical tooth extraction, keep the following in mind:
- Some bleeding is normal immediately after surgery. Bite gently on a clean gauze pad, changing the pad as it becomes soaked. Call us if bleeding continues after 24 hours.
- Relax, but don’t lie flat. Physical activity and a horizontal position may increase bleeding.
- Swelling is also normal and usually reaches its peak on the second or third day after surgery. Apply an ice pack to the side of your mouth to reduce swelling during the first 24 hours, and then change it for a warm, moist washcloth until swelling goes down.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Oral Surgeons Today
To schedule a consultation, contact our oral surgeons today. Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Associates has offices in three Alabama locations, and we proudly serve patients from Montgomery, Prattville, Troy, and the surrounding communities.
I wish to thank publically Dr. Ingalls and his staff for "going the extra mile" and not only providing great dental care but also helping a fellow human being out of compassion and caring. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you did for my family member.Rodney H.