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Impacted Wisdom Teeth Removal in San Diego - Diagnosis & Treatment - Extractions

Wisdom teeth are the third molars at the back of the mouth and usually begin to come in between the ages of 17 and 21. Most people have two wisdom teeth on the bottom and two wisdom teeth on the top. They can become impacted when there is not enough room in the mouth for them, or if they are tilted in your jaw and trying to come in sideways.

When an impacted wisdom tooth is trying to come in, the gum on top of it may become swollen and irritated. Your ear may hurt on that side of your face and you may experience pain in the nearby teeth. They can also cause damage to other teeth and potentially lead to other dental problems. Due to being so hard to clean they are very susceptible to gum disease and tooth decay.

Diagnosis
Make an appointment with your dentist if you experience pain or discomfort where the wisdom teeth are located. Your dentist will examine the area and take x-rays to determine if they are impacted. Keeping up on routine dental care will allow your dentist to keep an eye on your wisdom teeth with x-rays, and be able to recommend extracting them before discomfort or dental issues begin.

Treatment

Removal of the impacted wisdom teeth is done to prevent further dental complications and pain. Most dentists and oral surgeons will recommend removing the impacted wisdom teeth even if there are no symptoms present as a way to avoid issues in the future. Your oral surgeon will have a pre-op appointment to go over what will happen during the extraction, if they are going to use a sedative or anesthesia, and let you know how far before surgery you need to stop eating. The surgery for one tooth extraction will take approximately 30 minutes.

During a tooth extraction the oral surgeon will make an incision into the gum and remove any bone that is blocking access to the impacted tooth’s root. Once the tooth is removed, the wound is closed with stitches and gauze is packed into the socket (empty space).

Once surgery is over you may be given antibiotics to help fight infection and someone will need to drive you home. The extraction may cause swelling of the cheeks and jaw near the extraction site. There may also be some discomfort, pain, and/or bleeding. Your oral surgeon will send home instructions covering care for the wound, including managing your pain and swelling.

Please contact San Diego Oral Surgeon, Dr. Stettler’s office to set up an appointment to get a personalized plan for removing your impacted wisdom teeth.