Wisdom teeth, sometimes known as third molars, are the last set of teeth to develop in the mouth. When they emerge, they are often misaligned or get trapped beneath the gum and bone. This is called impaction and creates a situation that often needs to be addressed surgically.
other reasons to have your wisdom teeth removed:
Inflammation and infection. Due to a combination of limited space and partial impactions, wisdom teeth often lead to gum inflammation, which can lead to painful gum disease or other health hazards. Recent studies show that once inflammation sets in, it’s very difficult to alleviate it, and it easily spreads to surrounding areas. In addition, when a tooth is partially impacted, a separation between it and the gums creates a breeding ground for bacteria, which dramatically increases the risk of infection.
Overcrowding. When wisdom teeth erupt, they try to enter an already crowded area. With little room to move into, neighboring teeth can be displaced, resulting in misalignment. Whether your beautiful smile is thanks to braces or genetics, wisdom teeth can undo a straight smile as well as unravel years of dental work.
Damage to nearby teeth. While overcrowding is likely, wisdom teeth can do more to their neighbors than simply invade their space. In fact, they can damage the adjacent second molars by contributing to bone loss, periodontal disease, and cavities.
Cysts or tumors. An impacted wisdom tooth can lead to tiny tumors or cysts in the jawbone, which can lead to joint pain that would require a variety of TMJ treatment options that you would rather avoid.
Difficult to keep clean. If you experience no pain or obvious complications with the arrival of your wisdom teeth, your future dental hygiene may still be at risk. More than likely, space is at a minimum, and it can be difficult to properly brush and floss around a wisdom tooth. Limited space and their hard-to-reach location make these teeth prime targets for cavities and plaque buildup.
Evaluation and Procedure
Our doctors at Park Smiles NYC will first evaluate the position of your emerging wisdom teeth and determine whether they need to be removed. If extraction is necessary, problem wisdom teeth can be removed by Dr. Mahana in the convenience of our office using local anesthesia, nitrous oxide, intravenous sedation, or general anesthesia. The procedure usually takes 30-60 minutes.
For pain management, we also recommend Exparel, a long-lasting non-narcotic medication that is administered via injection prior to the procedure in addition to anesthesia. With Exparel, you can be pain-free for up to three days after surgery without the need for strong narcotic drugs that could lead to dependency or addiction.
The relative ease at which Dr. Mahana can extract your wisdom teeth depends on their position and stage of development. Dr. Mahana will be able to give you an idea of what to expect during your consultation.
A wisdom tooth that is fully erupted through the gum can be extracted as easily as any other tooth. However, a wisdom tooth that is underneath the gums and embedded in the jawbone will require an incision into the gums and then removal of the portion of bone that lies over the tooth. Often, for a tooth in this situation, the tooth will be extracted in small sections rather than removed in one piece to minimize the amount of bone that needs to be removed to get the tooth out.
Once the teeth have been extracted, the gums are sutured with dissolvable sutures and patients remain under the supervision of our trained staff until they are ready to go home. Patients will receive postoperative care instructions and a prescription for pain medication. As with all of our treatments and procedures at Park Smiles NYC, we are always available to quickly address any concerns or issues that may arise following wisdom teeth extraction.
PARK SMILES NYC
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