Common Tooth Removal Questions

One of the most common forms of oral surgery in dentistry is tooth extraction, including wisdom tooth extraction.  Since up to 80% of people will need to have their wisdom teeth removed, it’s a subject that is often asked about by our patients.

Some of the frequently asked questions about wisdom tooth removal include: Why do wisdom teeth need to be removed? What is the best age to remove wisdom teeth? How is pain managed for wisdom tooth extraction?

Read on to find out some answers to these questions.  If you have any immediate concerns about your wisdom teeth or those of your family members, please don’t hesitate to contact us to book an appointment today.

Why are wisdom teeth removed?

Wisdom teeth are usually removed for one of the following reasons:

  • wisdom teeth are erupting tilted, sideways or twisted
  • the wisdom teeth are “impacted,” or don’t have enough space to erupt
  • tooth decay, gum disease or periodontal disease is occurring
  • an infection has occurred

When should wisdom teeth be extracted?

It’s not always an obvious decision to remove wisdom teeth. The best plan in general is to talk to our Nanaimo dentists about the best plan based on your situation.

Even when there are no visible signs that your wisdom teeth are causing problems, your dentist may suggest their removal.  The following are some of the reasons why this may be the case:

  • Un-erupted wisdom teeth show signs of growing crooked and potentially damaging other teeth as well as the gums or supporting bone
  • Wisdom teeth only partially emerge through the gums, increasing the chance of a bacterial infection
  • A cyst develops around an un-erupted wisdom tooth and there is danger of compromising surrounding tissue or bone.

What is the best age for wisdom teeth to be extracted?

It’s generally best to have wisdom teeth taken out between ages 16 and 22 since the formation of the root is not complete.

However, it’s not uncommon for impacted teeth to become a challenge for people in their 30s, 40s or 50s.  Although there’s no age limit for wisdom tooth removal, as you get older, the surgery and recovery can be more difficult.

One thing that is certain is that it’s not a good idea to postpone wisdom tooth removal if your dentist recommends it. Cavities, gum disease and periodontal disease in impacted wisdom teeth can spread to the neighbouring teeth.  It doesn’t make sense to put off wisdom tooth removal, especially when it could lead to the loss of more teeth.

How is pain managed in wisdom tooth extraction?

With the use of proper dental pain management techniques such as a local anesthetic, or sedation dentistry, you have no reason to fear wisdom teeth removal.

At Downtown Nanaimo Dental Clinic, we offer sedation dentistry for wisdom tooth removal and do our best to create a comfortable experience for our patients.  With the right post-surgical care, our patients normally recover from wisdom tooth removal and get back to their routines rapidly.

Please book an appointment to discuss your wisdom teeth or all of your family’s dental needs at our dental clinic today!