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Wisdom Teeth Removal

Why are most wisdom teeth removed?

Even seemingly “normal” wisdom teeth can prove problematic as time goes on. Retained wisdom teeth can lead to inflammation, gum disease and bone loss. This not only affects oral health but has also been linked to systemic health issues like heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and others. The best prevention is early removal of wisdom teeth.

When should wisdom teeth be removed?

A new study indicates that removing wisdom teeth during the teenage years reduces complications and healing times. According to recent findings, recovery from wisdom tooth removal was significantly longer for people older than 21 than for younger patients. In addition, the chance of nerve injury is less when wisdom teeth are removed at an earlier age, before the roots have formed.

Some of the most common reasons that dentists recommend early removal of wisdom teeth:

  • Limited Space. Most people do not have room in their mouth for wisdom teeth to successfully erupt in the correct position and alignment.
  • Disease Prevention. Wisdom teeth are associated with periodontal inflammation and disease. Research has linked gum disease to serious health conditions, including pregnancy complications, diabetes and heart disease.
  • Other Health Concerns. Impacted teeth often are associated with cysts and/or tumors. Removal of wisdom teeth in these cases entails increasingly complex surgery.
  • Lack of Functionality. Wisdom teeth provide no practical oral health benefit (i.e. they are too far back to be useful for chewing) and are difficult to clean correctly.
  • Crowding. Wisdom teeth (both impacted and erupted) can contribute to crowding of adjacent teeth.
  • Fewer Complications, Faster Recovery, Better Results. These are the top three reasons for removing wisdom teeth during the high school years.

Dr. Carlos Letelier is a Board Certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon. He is highly acclaimed and greatly experienced in removing even the most complicated wisdom teeth.