Experiencing discomfort at the back of your mouth? It could be that your wisdom teeth are starting to come in. If you’re in pain, we’ll take an X-ray to check the development and position of your third molars.
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the last set of permanent teeth to develop. They start forming in late childhood, usually making an appearance by the late teenage years. However, it’s not uncommon for them to continue developing well into your mid-20s. By age 30, wisdom teeth are usually completely developed.
Our dentists can predict whether or not your wisdom teeth will cause problems for you by taking X-rays. If there’s a lack of space or they’re turned at an angle, your wisdom teeth are at a much higher risk of causing complications which can include:
Whether you choose to have your wisdom teeth extracted or wait until there are noticeable problems, we take the most conservative approach possible at Whites Dental Care. It’s our mission to always make sure you’re aware of what’s actively going on behind your smile, what could happen and what we’re just not able to predict. Some people choose to wait several years until their wisdom teeth start to cause problems before they get them removed.
Biologically speaking, our diets are quite different than they were earlier in history. When we used to eat harder foods and cook less, humans ground their teeth down more quickly. But today our diets are softer, so we don’t see as much enamel wear. As a result, we don’t have the room for our third molars to come in and be functional.
Wisdom teeth extractions are a bit more involved than a standard tooth removal, so it’s perfectly normal to feel anxious before the procedure. To ensure your comfort during wisdom teeth extractions, we offer noise-canceling headphones to eliminate any noises associated with the procedure. We also have a television mounted on the ceiling above your chair for relaxation and distraction from the treatment.
Before we begin extracting your wisdom tooth or teeth, we will use a local anaesthetic to completely numb the area so you’ll only feel slight pressure and vibrations in your mouth. If you still feel anxious, we may prescribe an oral sedative for you to take an hour before your dental procedure. Whilst you will remain awake during the treatment, you will feel slightly drowsy and less anxious.
Alternatively, you can choose to have happy gas (nitrous oxide) which is easy to administer through a mask. It’s safe and wears off quite quickly so you can drive yourself home after the procedure. For more complex extractions, we may suggest an IV sedative administered by a specialist sedationist, so you can sleep throughout the entire procedure. IV sedatives take time to wear off, so keep in mind that you’ll need to have someone drive you to and from your appointment until the drowsiness subsides.
Do you need your wisdom teeth removed? Request a consultation for yourself, or your teen today.