The Common Condition of Impacted Wisdom Teeth
According to the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS), approximately 85% of individuals must have their wisdom teeth removed at some point in their lives due to tooth crowding. With statistics like this, it would seem that evolution has deemed wisdom teeth unnecessary for modern man.
Tooth crowding may be the most common reason for removal, but impacted wisdom teeth—a dangerous condition where the wisdom teeth do not fully emerge from beneath the gum line—aren’t far behind. In these cases, the area becomes susceptible to infection, disease and high-risk complications that can substantially threaten your oral health. This makes it important to maintain proper dental care and receive an early, treatable diagnosis.
Diagnosing Impacted Wisdom Teeth
The signs and symptoms of impacted wisdom teeth are not always obvious. A proper diagnosis requires a visit to your dentist in Manassas, examination, and x-rays. However, there are a few telltale signs that emerge in some individuals dealing with impacted wisdom teeth. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms below, schedule an appointment with your dentist to determine if you require wisdom teeth removal:
- Red, tender, swollen or bleeding gums
- Inflammation around the jaw
- Bad breath
- An unpleasant taste in the mouth
- Aching of the jaw or headaches
Options for Wisdom Teeth Removal
Not everyone has to have their wisdom teeth removed, but individuals with signs of potential complications will require a tooth extraction by a dentist or oral surgeon. The surgery is a simple outpatient procedure, generally performed at the dentist’s office. Local or general anesthesia may be applied to minimize discomfort.
To begin, your dentist or oral surgeon will make an incision in the gums and remove any bone blocking the impacted tooth. Then, each tooth is carefully removed and the empty tooth socket is packed with gauze. Finally, the incisions are stitched shut and the healing process begins.
Risks of Choosing not to Remove Wisdom Teeth
While wisdom teeth removal is your choice, it is wise to discuss your options with your dentist in Manassas and seek second opinions if you are uncertain. Even if your wisdom teeth never cause you palpable symptoms, you may still be at risk for complications. Most dentists prefer to remove the wisdom teeth prior to the age of 30, since the bone is more flexible, reducing complications during the tooth extraction procedure. Failure to remove impacted wisdom teeth can lead to serious damage, including:
- Cyst development
- Damage to adjacent teeth
- Tooth decay
- Gum infection
- Chronic mouth discomfort
- Poor alignment of the teeth
- Bacteria build-up in the teeth and gums
Although your wisdom teeth may not be causing you present discomfort, routine monitoring is essential to maintaining good oral health. You will need to visit your dentist in Manassas regularly for routine x-rays of the teeth that can reveal potential for disease, damage, and other complications.
To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in Manassas, call Dental One Associates of Manassas today at (571) 535-2365 or make an appointment.
Dental One Associates offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Manassas. With 4 affiliated practices throughout Virginia, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Dental One Associates of Manassas, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Dental One Associates of Manassas.