Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: We will continue to provide essential and emergent care for patients who need emergency dental care or are in pain at offices that remain open. Please call to schedule an appointment.

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

You’ve probably heard of wisdom teeth, but have you put any thought into what they are? They are actually just a third set of molars believed to be called wisdom teeth because they tend to emerge at a relatively mature age — typically, late teens to early 20s. 

Most people will eventually have these molars removed, though many do not. If you are one of the lucky ones who retains your wisdom teeth problem-free, they will actually help you chew your food. If you or your child has been experiencing pain and you believe the wisdom teeth may be to blame, call Parkway Dental to schedule an appointment. You may dial our Snellville, GA office at [phone] whenever you are ready.

Why Do So Many People Have Their Wisdom Teeth Extracted?

Some amount of discomfort is natural when the wisdom teeth begin to emerge. We will monitor their progress, and if certain scenarios happen we may recommend removal. 

  • Often, your mouth simply doesn’t have enough room to accommodate all those teeth. If the wisdom teeth begin to erupt in a jaw that that’s already full, they can crowd out other teeth and cause them to become misaligned.
  • If wisdom teeth become impacted, they don’t come in fully. This can enable bacteria to enter the gums, causing pain and infection. 
  • Sometimes, wisdom teeth come in fully, but crooked. This can damage neighboring teeth or gradually push them out of their proper place. 
  • Cysts can form on or near wisdom teeth. A cyst can actually damage your tooth root or destroy the bone in your jaw. 

If you retain your wisdom teeth, we will continue to monitor them, as oral health problems can occur later in life. Be sure to brush and floss them regularly!

What Can I Expect During Wisdom Teeth Removal?

The removal of wisdom teeth is a surgical procedure, but it is routine and often necessary to stave off long-term problems and keep your mouth healthy. Your mouth will be thoroughly numbed prior to the procedure so you don’t feel a thing. You may also choose to undergo some degree of dental sedation. We are happy to discuss your options with you, and the pros and cons of each. How long the procedure takes depends on a number of factors, including how many teeth you are having removed and how they are positioned in your mouth. 

Recovery also depends on the details of your extraction, but you can expect some post-op bleeding, swelling, and discomfort. To control bleeding, place a piece of clean and moist gauze over the socket and apply steady pressure for about 45 minutes. You can also use a teabag: the tannins promote the formation of blood clots. Ice packs held to the side of the face help reduce swelling and pain. You may also take over-the counter pain relievers. 

At Parkway Dental, we will monitor your wisdom teeth, determine whether they are likely to cause a problem, and discuss your options with you. Schedule an appointment at our Snellville, GA office by calling [phone] or filling out our online form

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