The surgeons at Beacon Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons are experts at removing wisdom teeth at our office in Vancouver, WA. Also called third molars, they usually grow in much later than the rest of your teeth (between ages 17–25).
Wisdom teeth removals are some of the most common oral surgery procedures because, unfortunately, most people’s third molars do not have enough space to grow in without damaging adjacent teeth, gums, or bone tissue. They are some of the largest teeth in the mouth, and most people’s jaws are not large enough to accommodate them. The average mouth is equipped to hold 28 teeth, 14 in the maxilla and 14 in the mandible, and third molars are an extra two teeth trying to force their way into the jaws.
Why do I need to have my wisdom teeth removed?
Whereas the teeth in the front of the mouth (bicuspid teeth, incisors, canines) grasp food and provide value to the mouth with their chewing abilities, third molars are unnecessary for proper oral function — our diets simply don’t require their added grinding power. Removing them is the best way to prevent damage to your other teeth (maxillary and mandibular incisors, canines, premolars, first molars, and second molars). They don’t always have to be taken out, but when they become impacted or infected, they can pose a threat to your oral health. If this is the case, you will likely be referred to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. When they are not treated promptly, they can cause a variety of problems, including
- Dental crowding
- Damage to the roots of adjacent molars
- Oral pain and discomfort
- Infection, cysts, and sometimes even tumors caused by impacted wisdom teeth
When is the right time to have them removed?
Most dental professionals recommend having them removed early to avoid the issues listed above. Everyone’s teeth develop at different rates, so there is no single set age that is best for having the molars removed. The best way to know if your they are developing properly is to have regular dental exams to track the teeth as they develop beneath your gums.
Removals often occur before the molars have fully emerged from the gums. Your oral surgeon will review your X-rays and possibly take additional 3D scans before forming the most precise possible treatment plan for your procedure. This will all take place during a consultation appointment, where you will have the opportunity to discuss your treatment plan and ask questions about your procedure, anesthesia options, and recovery.
Your surgical appointment will take place on a different day than your consultation. First, your oral surgeon will administer your anesthesia, which prevents any pain during the procedure. Most patients undergo IV sedation, which allows you to sleep comfortably during the surgery; the procedure usually lasts no more than a couple of hours. Once your anesthetic is administered, your oral surgeon will extract your third molars. After the extractions, your surgeon will suture the surgical sites and allow you to rest until your anesthesia wears off. You will need a driver to bring you home after your procedure.
Most patients need just a couple of days to rest and recover before returning to their normal schedules, although you will have to follow certain instructions to keep your surgical sites clean while they heal. Your surgeon will discuss these instructions in full during your consultation appointment before your procedure.
Where can I have wisdom teeth removed in Vancouver, WA?
Beacon Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons offers removal in Vancouver, WA. Our oral surgeons provide excellent care from all four of our offices in the Vancouver area. To schedule an appointment or to learn more about extractions at our practice, feel free to contact one of our offices for more information.