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Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed?

Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed? | Kenneth J. Wolnik, DDSWisdom teeth are the third set of molars in the back of your mouth and usually come in between the ages of 17 and 25. According to a Mayo Clinic study, 10 million wisdom teeth are removed each year and more than 60% of these removals aren’t need. It begs the question, do I need my wisdom teeth removed? The short answer: maybe. If the wisdom teeth don’t have room to grow properly, it can cause problems.

There are several reasons why you many need your wisdom teeth removed:

Impacted They may not come in normally and get trapped in your gums.
No Room The mouth’s not big enough, so the teeth come in at the wrong angle.
Oral Health Issues You can’t reach your wisdom teeth, and this leads to cavities or gum disease.
Jaw Damage Cysts form around new teeth, which can damage your jaw.
Sinus Problems Wisdom teeth can lead to sinus pain, pressure, and congestion.
Alignment They can reverse the effects of braces, bridges, crowns, and partial dentures.


Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed? | Kenneth J. Wolnik, DDSTypes of anesthesia – Once your dentist or oral surgeon determines that your wisdom teeth need to be removed; the next step is to decide what type of anesthesia is best for the procedure.

  • Local anesthesia – The oral surgeon numbs your gums first, then gives you a shot of Novocain. You’ll be awake during the procedure and experience some pressure and movement, but you won’t feel any pain.
  • IV sedation – This is a good option if you want to be asleep during the tooth extraction. You’ll receive drugs through a vein in your arm, which suppresses your consciousness. You’ll have limited memory of the procedure.
  • General anesthesia – You inhale the medication through your nose or an IV in your arm, which will put you to sleep. The surgical team monitors your medication, breathing, temperature, fluids, and blood pressure. There’s no pain or memory of the surgery.

The Extraction Process – Your oral surgeon makes an incision in the gum tissue and removes the bone to get access to the tooth root. Next, he removes the tooth and cleans the site of any debris left from the tooth and bone.  In some cases, your oral surgeon may divide the tooth into sections to make extraction easier. Lastly, the surgeon stitches the wound closed, and places gauze over the extraction site to control bleeding and promote healing.

After Surgery Care – You’ll experience mild swelling and discomfort for up to three days with full recovery taking a few weeks. Since everyone responds differently to the anesthesia, it’s important that you develop a post-surgery plan.  If you choose to go with local anesthesia, you may be able to drive yourself home, go to work, and resume your normal activities. If you choose IV sedation or general anesthesia, arrange transportation from your oral surgeon’s office and enlist a family member or friend to monitor you for the first 24 hours.

Complications – Though recovering from a wisdom tooth removal procedure is relatively easy, there are some potential complications you should be aware of:Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed | Kenneth J. Wolnik, DDS

  • Dry sockets – This occurs when a blood clot fails to develop in the tooth socket, or if the blood clot becomes dislodged.
  • Nerve injury – Causes temporary or permanent problems, such as pain and numbness.
  • Infection – If you experience a fever, pain, or swelling that doesn’t improve these are signs of infection and you should call your doctor.

Think you need your wisdom teeth removed?

Contact Dr. Wolnik Today!

Kenneth J. Wolnik, DDS practices general dentistry in Parma Heights, Ohio. In addition to providing dental cleaning and fillings, Dr. Wolnik also specializes in cosmetic and restorative dentistry, as well as, sleep apnea treatment. Give us a call at (440) 888-5055, email us [email protected] or contact us online!

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