Wisdom tooth removal isn’t always necessary. You may not have to have your third molars extracted if they’re healthy, positioned correctly and have enough room to fully erupt.
In most cases, however, wisdom teeth grow to become problematic. For this reason, oral surgeons often recommend extraction. Removal is typically the best approach to preventing future oral health problems.
To determine whether you should consider third molar extraction, you’ll need to schedule an evaluation with an experienced local oral surgeon. During the consultation, your oral surgeon will discuss your oral and overall health, perform an examination of your teeth and discuss the best option for you.
Health Status Review
To design a safe and effective oral care treatment plan, your oral surgeon needs to have a solid understanding of your health status.
For that reason, wisdom teeth removal consultations typically start with a thorough review of your medical and dental history. You’ll also be asked to provide details of past surgeries, drug allergies and previous experiences with anesthesia. And to avoid potential risks and complications, your oral surgeon will want to see a list of the over-the-counter and prescription medications you currently take.
Wisdom Tooth Examination
Next comes the oral examination, which shows exactly what’s going on with your third molars.
After a visual check of your teeth, gums and jaw, you’ll be sent for imaging tests. X-rays and CT scans are commonly ordered, as they provide clear images of the bones, teeth and soft tissues. Detailed, three-dimensional pictures that can be used in oral health care planning and treatment are then created from these images.
A dental impression of your jaws can also be helpful in evaluating the wisdom teeth. To create a detailed cast of your mouth, your oral surgeon may ask you to bite down on a special mouth tray for a few minutes.
Treatment Plan Discussion
The final step of your wisdom tooth removal consultation is to discuss your treatment plan.
Your oral surgeon will explain the status of your third molars and let you know whether extraction is necessary. If wisdom teeth removal is considered your best approach to maintaining a healthy smile, you’ll go over the various anesthesia options.
If yours is a complicated extraction, general anesthesia may be required — which means the procedure may need to be completed at a local surgery center or hospital. However, most patients are able to schedule in-office procedures and can choose between oral sedation, nitrous oxide and IV anesthesia.
Recovery from wisdom tooth extraction will also be discussed. Before you leave the office, you’ll have a good idea of what to expect from the healing process.
At the end of your consultation, you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions. We want you to feel comfortable and confident in your treatment plan, so we provide answers to all your questions and concerns.
For expert care in the greater Salt Lake City area, schedule your consultation with Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery of Utah. Dr. Partridge and Dr. Maxfield, our board-certified oral surgeons, have more than 10 years of experience in wisdom teeth management and can design an effective treatment plan to protect your oral health. Contact our Cottonwood Heights, South Jordan or Tooele office today to schedule your wisdom tooth removal consultation.