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Perfecting and protecting your beautiful, healthy smile is our passion. If left unaddressed, wisdom teeth can wreck your smile by crowding your other teeth. We help our Houston area patients decide whether removing wisdom teeth is in their best interests.

Here, we’ve answered your most pressing questions about wisdom tooth extraction.

Why Are Wisdom Teeth Removed?

  • For many of us, wisdom teeth (the set of molars in the back of your mouth) can cause crowding or damage to adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or even nerves.
  • They also are more vulnerable to tooth decay, since you may have a hard time brushing and flossing them. Furthermore, when a tooth is partially erupted, bacteria can enter the tooth and gums and cause infection.

Can I Wait Until They Cause A Problem?

  • Often, based on their current position and predictions about how they might grow, your dentist will recommend removing wisdom teeth before problems develop.
  • Waiting can make the extraction more complicated, and potentially more painful. Your dentist will take periodic x-rays to monitor the growth of your wisdom teeth, and recommend when, or if, removal is necessary.

Could I Experience Any Complications?

Complications of a wisdom tooth extraction can include:

  • Dry socket. This means that a blood clot failed to form, or was dislodged, leaving the bone and nerve exposed. Symptoms include pain that radiates from the socket, visible bone in the socket, unpleasant taste and mouth odor, and swollen lymph nodes. When dry socket occurs, your dentist will usually flush out the socket, and apply medicated dressings directly to the extraction site.
  • Paresthesia. This means that nerves have been bruised or damaged during the extraction. While it occurs infrequently, telltale signs are ongoing numbness of the tongue, lip, or chin.
  • While these complications are rare, be sure to call your dentist right away if you do experience these symptoms after a wisdom tooth removal.

Wisdom Tooth Extraction Sounds Scary!

Too many Americans postpone dental work because of dental fear or anxiety. Sedation dentistry can help relieve your anxiety and make invasive procedures easier. We offer a variety of sedation methods, including oral conscious sedation. An oral medication that you take prior to your dental visit, it works by inducing a state of deep relaxation. We also use IV sedation and nitrous oxide.

Our spa-like amenities also relax our patients. With paraffin hand treatments, freshly baked cookies, neck pillows and blankets, you might even forget that you’re having your wisdom teeth removed!

If you have questions about wisdom teeth extraction, call our Houston dentists today.