The third molars usually make an appearance between the ages of 17 and 21. These teeth are commonly referred to as the wisdom teeth since they erupt when we’re older and, supposedly, wiser. Not everyone gets their wisdom teeth, but for those who do, there may not be enough space in the jaw to accommodate them, which is why it’s not uncommon for them to become impacted (stuck under the bone or tissue) or erupt in a way that can cause problems with the surrounding teeth, jaw, and tissue. When that’s the case, wisdom tooth removal can prevent complications and preserve or restore the health of your smile. To find out if you or your teenager is a candidate for wisdom tooth removal in Naperville, schedule a visit online or by calling us at (630) 848-2010.
An Integrated, Cutting-Edge Approach
At Naperville Dental Specialists, we have general dentists, cosmetic dentists, and a range of specialists, including a board-certified oral surgeon and a board-certified dental anesthesiologist on our team. This means we can safely administer sedation in our office and perform even the most complex wisdom teeth removal procedures.
Thanks to our state-of-the-art diagnostic tools, including our i-CAT® imaging system, we can determine if your wisdom teeth are currently causing problems or if they will create problems in the future, such as infection, crowding, damage to surrounding teeth and bone, or cysts. Since we can see your entire dental and facial anatomy with the 3D scans, we’re able to precisely plan out the procedure for maximum effectiveness and safety.
It’s important to note that early evaluation can have a number of benefits and studies show that patients in their teens and early 20s have a low risk for complications and heal faster. Plus, extracting impacted wisdom teeth before their root structure fully develops is much less invasive.
While wisdom teeth extraction can be performed with a local anesthetic, most patients opt for oral conscious or IV sedation. If you do decide on sedation, an adult will have to drive you to your appointment, stay during the procedure, and drive you home.
Once you’re anesthetized, your Naperville oral surgeon or dentist will get started. Depending on your case, it could be a matter of simply rocking the tooth and easing it out of the socket. Or, your dentist might have to make an opening in the gums and/or remove bony obstructions before breaking the tooth into smaller pieces for removal. Once all of the wisdom teeth have been extracted, the areas are cleaned and, if needed, the openings are sutured closed.
Wisdom Tooth Removal Aftercare
The wisdom tooth removal recovery period generally lasts a few days. You should rest to promote healing and take any medications as prescribed to manage pain. Bleeding is completely normal. To control it, fold up gauze pads so they’re thick enough to bite on and place them against the extraction sites. Bite down firmly, changing them as needed. Keeping your head elevated will also help.
You can hold an ice pack on the outside of your cheeks for 15-20 minutes at a time during the first 24 hours after the procedure. The next day, you can gently rinse your mouth with salt water several times a day to reduce discomfort. We may also have you irrigate the area.
Stick with soft foods for several days. While you will want to maintain good oral hygiene, avoid brushing the extraction area during the healing period. You’ll also want to be careful about putting anything in your mouth. Follow all of the additional post-operative instructions we give you for optimal healing.
Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed?
The wisdom teeth usually erupt between the ages of 17 and 21, though they can come in earlier or later.
An estimated 10 million wisdom teeth are removed each year in the United States.
Approximately 85% of people have their wisdom extracted at some point in their lives.