You and your doctor may determine that you need a tooth extraction for several reasons. Some teeth are extracted because they are severely decayed; others may have advanced periodontal disease or have broken in a way that cannot be repaired. Other teeth may need removal because they are poorly positioned in the mouth (such as impacted teeth) or in preparation for orthodontic treatment.
Removing a single tooth can lead to problems related to your chewing ability, problems with your jaw joint, and shifting teeth, which can have a major impact on your dental health. To avoid these complications, in most cases, your dentist will discuss alternatives to extractions and replacement of the extracted tooth. Tooth extractions are one of the general dentistry services we provide to the public in Plano, Texas.
The Tooth Extraction Process
At the time of extraction, the doctor will need to numb your tooth, jawbone, and gums that surround the area with a local anesthetic. During the extraction process, you will feel a lot of pressure. This is from firmly rocking the tooth to widen the socket for removal.
You feel the pressure without pain as the anesthetic has numbed the nerves stopping the transference of pain, yet the nerves that transmit pressure are not profoundly affected. If you feel pain at any time during tooth extraction in our Plano, TX office, please let us know immediately.
Sectioning a Tooth
Some teeth require sectioning. This procedure is very common when a tooth is so firmly anchored in its socket, or the root is curved, and the socket can’t expand enough to remove it. The doctor cuts the tooth into sections and removes each one at a time.
After Tooth Extraction in Plano, TX
Following a tooth extraction, it’s important for a blood clot to form to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. Bite on a gauze pad for 30-45 minutes immediately after the appointment. If the bleeding or oozing still persists, place another gauze pad and bite firmly for another 30 minutes. You may have to do this several times to stop blood flow. You will be provided with patient home care instructions.
After the blood clot forms, it is important not to disturb or dislodge it. Do not rinse vigorously, suck on straws, smoke, drink alcohol, or brush your teeth next to the extraction site for 72 hours. These activities may dislodge or dissolve the clot and hinder the healing process. Limit vigorous exercise for the next 24 hours, as this increases blood pressure and may cause more bleeding from the extraction site.
After the tooth is extracted, you may feel some pain and experience some swelling. An ice pack or an unopened bag of frozen peas or corn applied to the area will keep swelling to a minimum. Take pain medications as prescribed. The swelling usually subsides after 48 hours.
Use pain medication as directed. Call our office if the medication doesn’t seem to be working. If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length, even if signs and symptoms of infection are gone. Drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious, soft food on the extraction day. You can eat normally as soon as you are comfortable.
It is important to resume your normal dental routine after 24 hours. This should include brushing and flossing your teeth at least once a day. This will speed healing and help keep your mouth fresh and clean.
After a few days, you should feel fine and resume your normal activities. Call our office immediately if you have heavy bleeding, severe pain, continued swelling for 2-3 days, or a reaction to the medication.
Oral Examination for Extraction of Wisdom Teeth
With an oral examination and x-rays of the mouth, our doctors can evaluate the position of the wisdom teeth and predict if there are present or future potential problems. Studies have shown that early evaluation and treatment result in a superior outcome for the patient. Patients are generally first evaluated by their dentist, orthodontist, or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon in their mid-teen years.
All outpatient surgery is performed under appropriate anesthesia to maximize patient comfort. Our doctors are trained, licensed, and highly experienced in providing various types of anesthesia for patients.
Why Should I Have My Wisdom Teeth Removed?
If you do not have enough room in your mouth for your third molars to erupt fully, several problems can happen. Impacted wisdom teeth should be removed before their root structure is fully developed. In some patients, it is as early as 12 or 13; in others, it may not be until the early twenties. Problems tend to occur with increasing frequency after the age of 30. Some of the possible problems related to not removing your wisdom teeth include:
The most frequent clinical problem is pericoronitis (a localized gum infection). Without enough room for total eruption, the gum tissue around the wisdom tooth can become irritated and infected, resulting in recurrent pain, swelling, and problems with chewing and/or swallowing.
Non-infectious diseases may also arise in association with an impacted wisdom tooth. Cysts are fluid-filled “balloons” inside the jaw bone that develop due to impacted teeth and slowly expand, destroying adjacent jaw bones and, occasionally, teeth. They can be very difficult to treat if your wisdom teeth are not removed in your teenage years. Although rare, tumors can be associated with delayed wisdom teeth removal.
Impacted wisdom teeth may contribute to the crowding of your teeth. This is most noticeable with the front teeth, primarily the lower front teeth, and is most commonly seen after a patient has had braces. Some factors cause teeth to crowd after braces or in early adulthood. Retained, impacted wisdom teeth may be a contributing factor. Unless you have an active problem when you see the oral surgeon, the reason for removal is primarily to prevent long-term damage to your teeth, gums, and jaw bone.
Damage to Adjacent Teeth
If there is inadequate room to clean around the wisdom tooth, the tooth directly in front, the second molar, can be adversely affected, resulting in gum disease, bone loss around the tooth, and/or decay.
What if I don’t have my wisdom teeth removed as a teenager or young adult?
As wisdom teeth develop, the roots become longer and the jaw bone more dense. When it is necessary to remove impacted wisdom teeth in your thirties, forties, or beyond, the post-operative course can be prolonged, and there is a higher complication rate.
Treating these complications is often more difficult and less predictable than with a younger patient. Healing may be slower, and the chance of infection can be increased. If your impacted wisdom teeth are not removed in your teenage years or early in your twenties and they are completely impacted in bone, it may be advisable to wait until a localized problem (such as cyst formation or localized gum disease and bone loss) develops. You will generally heal faster, more predictably, and have fewer complications if treated in your teens or early twenties.
What Happens On the Day of My Wisdom Teeth Extraction?
Most people prefer to be unaware of the experience when their wisdom teeth are removed and usually decide to be sedated. You will be provided with appropriate anesthesia options at your consultation. All outpatient surgery is performed under appropriate anesthesia to maximize your comfort.
Our office staff has the training, licensing, and experience to provide the various types of anesthesia. These services are provided in an environment of optimum safety, utilizing modern monitoring equipment and well-trained, experienced staff. The Surgical Care Team, the office facilities, and the doctors are regularly inspected on behalf of the Board of Dental Examiners.
On the day of your procedure, you will take medications to help minimize post-operative pain and swelling. We ask that a parent or responsible adult accompanies you to the office and plans to stay with you the rest of the day. The procedure will take about 30 to 60 minutes, and you will probably be in the office for 90 minutes. Recent advances in medicine and technology allow patients to undergo wisdom tooth removal in a manner that promotes rapid healing and minimal post-operative discomfort. State-of-the-art sterilization and infection control techniques are used at all times.
On the morning or afternoon of your surgery, it is essential that you have nothing to eat or drink (excluding prescription medications with a sip of water) for at least 6 hours (preferably longer). This does not mean you should try to fit in one “last meal” exactly six hours before your surgery. Anything in your stomach can increase the risk for serious anesthetic complications, including nausea and vomiting. Your procedure will be rescheduled if you have not heeded these guidelines.
We may provide you with a prescription for pain medication at your consultation appointment, which can be filled in advance for your convenience. When you are seated in the surgical room, we will make every effort to make you as comfortable as possible. If you are going to be sedated, we usually will place an IV in your left arm. This is a quick and nearly painless procedure that ensures optimal delivery of your medication. Local anesthesia is given to you afterward to ensure comfort and allow adequate time to travel home and rest. You will be sleepy for a significant portion of the day.
Home Instructions After Wisdom Teeth Extraction
Be sure to have an adult with you at the time of removal. Make plans to have a parent or responsible adult stay with you for the rest of the day following wisdom tooth removal.
If your surgery requires stitches, these usually dissolve in 3 to 5 days and do not require removal. You may also notice a sensation of your gums feeling swollen and pulling away from your teeth. This is all part of the normal recovery and will subside in several days.
Once the local anesthesia wears off, you may require prescription pain medication. Try non-narcotic anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen (Advil®) first to see if that adequately treats your pain. If not, begin your other prescription pain medication. The local anesthesia may last until the following day and should not be confused with an injury to your nerve. We recommend starting your post-operative diet with clear liquids such as jello and broth, gradually increasing in substance as your body permits.
If you are given antibiotics and take birth control pills, please be aware that the pills might become ineffective and take appropriate precautions.
What does wisdom tooth removal cost, and does insurance cover it?
Several factors determine the fee for your treatment. These may include difficulty removing your teeth and which type of anesthesia is best for you. During your consultation appointment, the surgeon will need to review your x-rays, complete an examination and determine the best option for anesthesia before an accurate estimate can be provided.
Every insurance company has a different policy regarding the extent of coverage for a given surgical procedure. The oral surgeon’s office staff will help you obtain maximum insurance coverage for your treatment.
What if I have questions before surgery?
Your situation will be discussed in greater detail during your consultation. We encourage you to ask any questions you may have. If new questions arise after your consultation, please call our office at Plano Office Phone Number(972) 381-1888 to speak to one of our patient care coordinators.
Please do not eat or drink anything before your surgery. Having anything in your stomach can increase the risk of serious anesthetic complications.
Wisdom Teeth FAQs
When it comes to surgery for your child, you’ve got many questions. We hope the guide we’ve created below will provide the answers you’re looking for and calm any anxiety you may have.
Whether it’s you or your teenager, rest assured that our expert surgeon, Bryan Moore, DDS, PA, has received advanced dental and implant surgery training and delivers safe and caring surgical treatments with advanced surgical techniques every day. We take your faith in us and our expertise very seriously.
What are wisdom teeth?
Wisdom teeth are your third set of molars in the back of your mouth. They are the last to come in, most commonly between the ages of 16-25.
Does everyone need to get his or her wisdom teeth removed?
There are those very rare cases when patients don’t need their wisdom teeth removed. Occasionally, we see a patient whose wisdom teeth appear to have fit nicely in the mouth and don’t need removal. However, these patients’ wisdom teeth are still disease-prone and must be monitored for life. A very small number of people also never get wisdom teeth.
When is the best time to get wisdom teeth removed?
We recommend having your wisdom teeth removed during your late teens or early twenties before the roots fully develop and entwined in the nerves in the jawbone. Waiting can make extraction much more complicated.
Do all four teeth have to be pulled?
Not necessarily. We assess each patient’s oral health thoroughly as we determine the best course of action for each unique case. Sometimes only one or two third molars need to be removed.
Is it true that the surgery takes less than an hour?
In most cases, yes! Of course, the number of teeth we remove, the impaction severity, and several other factors affect the length of the surgery. However, most extractions do take less than an hour, and we will keep you comfortable the whole time.
How long does recovery take after wisdom teeth removal?
You will probably be too sleepy to do much on the first day of your recovery, but most patients return to normal activities within 3-4 days.
Do wisdom teeth extractions hurt?
You will not feel anything during the procedure. It isn’t uncommon for patients to have soreness for a few days following the surgery as the anesthesia wears off. Before surgery, we will discuss pain control methods and set you up with any necessary prescriptions so that you remain comfortable at home.
Will I be awake for the extraction?
It’s up to you. We have a variety of options of anesthesia to accommodate different patients’ needs, and we discuss your anesthesia preferences before your surgery day.
What does “impacted” mean?
Excellent question. Impacted wisdom teeth are not able to fully erupt through the gums. It is a very common condition for wisdom teeth and is the number one reason wisdom teeth need to be removed. 9 out of 10 people have at least one impacted wisdom tooth.
What is a “dry socket”?
Dry socket is a temporary complication that arises when a blood clot becomes dislodged from the extraction site, exposing tissue. The condition can be painful. Luckily, most cases can be avoided by following home-care instructions, including avoiding straws and smoking.
Schedule a Consultation
Do you need tooth extraction treatment? Call Texas Dental at 972-636-4522 . You may also request a dental appointment with us online.