Wisdom Teeth & Extractions

Though helping you keep your natural teeth for your entire life is our goal at Leesburg Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, sometimes a tooth extraction may be the best treatment option.

Leesburg wisdom teeth extractions

Though helping you keep your natural teeth for your entire life is our goal at Leesburg Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, sometimes a tooth extraction may be the best treatment option.

One of the most common extractions is wisdom teeth. That’s because the wisdom teeth often cause problems with the other teeth and removing them is the best choice for your overall oral health. Your wisdom teeth are molars, the teeth in the back of the mouth. They are the last set of molars to come in, usually arriving in the late teens or early 20s. They got the name wisdom teeth because they often come in when a person is near the end of high school or in college.

The problem with wisdom teeth is that because they are the last teeth to come in, sometimes there is not room for them to fit so they get trapped and don’t come in, remaining trapped under the gums, or they force their way in but are angled. Sometimes they crowd other teeth and cause problems for these teeth as well. Wisdom teeth and the other molars have complicated roots compared to the front teeth. That is why the extraction of molars is done under general anesthesia. Simple extractions of other teeth are usually done with a local anesthetic.

The decision of whether or not a tooth should be extracted is ultimately up to you, but Dr. Whitman can offer advice and explain the options. With wisdom teeth, some people are fortunate and have wisdom teeth with no issues, eliminating the need for extraction. For others, it can be a difficult decision to make. Generally the extraction will be easier if it is done at an earlier age. Some people do choose to have their wisdom teeth removed to prevent problems from developing later.

Wisdom Teeth and Extractions FAQs

Here are a few of the most common questions people ask about wisdom teeth and extractions.

Is it better to get an extraction than a root canal?

Neither of these options is better than the other; it’s a decision that can only be made on an individual, case-by-case basis. What is important is that you have a healthy tooth. If extraction is the choice, then the tooth should be replaced with a false tooth, bridge or implant.

I need a tooth extracted but I’m afraid the pain of the needle. Can I just wait for the tooth to fall out on its own?

If you allow a dying tooth to fall out on its own, it might take a lot longer than you think. And during that time, the decay from that tooth can spread to other teeth. The injection for anesthesia before a tooth extraction might not be pleasant, but the toothache pain you experience from your dying tooth is likely to be far worse, and continue for days or weeks. Sedation dentistry can also help you relax and make the extraction appointment comfortable.

If my wisdom teeth are okay now, can they suddenly start causing problems years from now?

If you’re one of the lucky ones whose wisdom teeth come in correctly, there is a good chance you can keep them, along with the rest of your teeth, for your whole life. However, proper oral hygiene and regular checkups are essential to maintaining the health of all your teeth.

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