Once your child is between the ages of 17 and 25, they may start mentioning a soreness in the back of their mouth. While you won’t know for sure until you visit your Palm Beach Gardens dentist, it’s likely that they’re wisdom teeth are beginning to erupt, especially if they haven’t had any dental issues in the past. In most cases, your dentist can handle this on his own.
However, in some cases, he may need to refer your child to an oral surgeon.
Your General Dentist Handles Simple Extractions
In many cases, your dentist can remove wisdom teeth without much issue. In the circumstance that the tooth is exposed, no impaction has occurred, and the tooth has not fractured, a simple extraction can be performed.
To do this, your dentist first applies a local anesthetic to the area around the tooth, ensuring that the treatment is as comfortable as possible for your child. Then, your dentist uses an elevator to loosen the tooth and remove it from the periodontal ligament, a fibrous tissue meant to keep teeth in place in tandem with the alveolar bone and gum tissue. Once sufficiently elevated, your dentist uses a pair of dental forceps to grab the tooth and extract it.
Afterwards, your child will be given all the instructions necessary to care for the affected area and prevent complications during the healing period, including dry socket.
When an Oral Surgeon is Needed
In the event that a wisdom tooth is significantly impacted or fractured underneath the gum line, a surgical extraction will be performed. “Impacted” simply means that their tooth has failed to erupt through the gum line and requires surgical intervention to remove. Therefore, your dentist will refer you to an oral surgeon.
Oral surgeons are better prepared to handle complications such as these because they have the expertise and materials to do so the most effectively. For example, they’re more capable of handling impacted teeth, curved roots, or teeth and bone infections, which can all accompany wisdom tooth eruptions. They’re also trained to provide IV sedation and general anesthesia, which may be necessary for your child’s complex case.
Not All Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed
Keep in mind that wisdom teeth removal is common, but not always necessary. It just happens to be common because most patients’ mouths aren’t large enough to accommodate an additional four molars.
Before your dentist performs any extractions, they’ll confirm that one of the following is occurring:
- Damage to other teeth
- Nerve pain
- Misalignment or bite problems
- Developing cysts or tumors (in rare cases)
While it is extremely rare, all four wisdom teeth can erupt without the need for extraction. In the end, your dentist only has your child’s best oral health in mind. To learn more about extractions or get your child treated, schedule an appointment today!
About the Author
Dr. Nirav Patel earned his dental degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine. In order to provide your family the best dental care possible, he regularly attends continuing education to learn the best techniques and technology available. To learn more about his practice, contact him through his website.