Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are often the last teeth to erupt into the mouth, usually by our early twenties. They evoke a sense of dread in many individuals but not all wisdom teeth need to be removed and, if required, their removal can be well managed. If there is enough space in the mouth and they come through into a good position, with good oral hygiene, wisdom teeth can be well maintained. When they fail to erupt or they grow into the wrong position, impacted wisdom teeth can cause severe pain from problems such as:
- Gum infections – if the tooth is only partially through the gum or is difficult to clean;
- Tooth decay – on the wisdom tooth and/or on the adjacent tooth if the wisdom tooth is pushing against it. Often this is due to it being very difficult to reach to clean properly;
- Cysts around un-erupted wisdom teeth may damage surrounding teeth and bone.
Wisdom teeth can be assessed by your dentist to predict whether they’re likely to be a problem in the future. At Cottesloe Dental, our team of experienced dentists can treat wisdom tooth issues including the need for extraction. This will require an x-ray to assess whether the teeth need to be removed and if this can be performed in the dental chair.
Many extractions are performed under a local anaesthetic to completely numb the area so that the procedure is painless. Sedation can be offered to limit memory of the procedure and to help with relaxation. If the extraction is more complex it may require referral to a specialist surgeon. Complex extraction often is a day procedure in a hospital under a general anaesthetic.
For further information or if you would like to make a booking, please contact us.