In the event that a tooth dies or cannot be saved by restoration, your dentist may recommend complete removal of the tooth from the mouth. 

Third molar extraction

Wisdom teeth or third molars do not always erupt properly when they decide to make an appearance. It is wise to get an early opinion on the status of your wisdom teeth

Why don't wisdom teeth grow in right?

The shape of the modern human mouth is often too small to accommodate wisdom teeth, which make their first appearance in young adults 17 to 26. Over the course of time, humans have developed smaller jaws. When humans learned to harness fire for cooking foods and developed blade tools to better process food before consumption, they reduced the need for strong jaws to chew food. According to studies of ancient skull specimens, over time, a full set of teeth in a smaller jaw caused crowding in permanent teeth because of lack of space.

What does impacted mean?
When wisdom teeth don't have room to grow or they haven't reached their final position by age 25, they are considered impacted no place to go and no plans to grow. Third molar impaction is the most prevalent medical development disorder. A full set of healthy teeth sometimes doesn't leave much room for wisdom teeth to grow.

What kind of problems can impacted third molars cause?
Partially erupted wisdom teeth are breeding grounds for organisms that may cause infections and cysts around a trapped wisdom tooth. Jaw pain and gum disease may occur. Not all wisdom teeth cause problems.

Can't I just use an antibiotic?
Antibiotics only soothe infected wisdom teeth for a short time. Since people frequently use a wide variety of antibiotics, the infection may be resistant to such medication. Also, the infection can recur after the treatment of antibiotics is finished.

When is removal necessary?

It isn't wise to wait until wisdom teeth bother you. Early removal is generally recommended to avoid problems, such as an impacted tooth that compromises the second molar. Younger people heal quickly, as well. At an early age people should be evaluated to track third molar development with the help of x-rays. Second molars should be visible to lessen the chance of damaging them during surgery. This occurs at age 11 or 12, so wisdom teeth should be removed when the decision has been made so they cannot erupt into an acceptable position.

What if I don't have any symptoms?

People with symptoms of impaction, such as pain, swelling and infection should have their wisdom teeth removed immediately. However, those with no symptoms can avoid the chance of ever suffering from impacted wisdom teeth or achieve better orthodontic treatment results by having them removed. Asymptomatic impacted wisdom teeth should also be removed to reduce unexplained pain, accommodate prosthetic appliances, or avoid cavities, periodontal disease, bone shrinkage and tumor development.

How is the tooth removed?

Surgery for impacted wisdom teeth consists of cutting gum tissue over the tooth, gently stripping connective tissue away from the tooth and bone, removing the tooth and suturing the gum.

Post-Operative Care (Home Care)

At the conclusion of your appointment, the dentist will provide you with post-operative care instructions.  To maintain the integrity of the treatment that you receive, it is helpful to follow the instructions provided and if you have any concerns, do not hesitate to call the office.  If you have had an extraction or any surgical procedure, it is important to remember to avoid foods that are too hot or difficult to eat.  Do not drink out of a straw and avoid smoking.  The tissues in the mouth tend to heal rapidly so the period of post-operative care will not be too long. 

Home care instructions will include how to brush and floss effectively to encourage rapid healing and promote long term optimal health.