July 8, 2024
Medically Reviewed By Matthew T. Streelman, DDS, MD

Orthodontists play a crucial role in achieving that perfect smile through orthodontic treatment like braces or clear aligners. But sometimes, achieving optimal results may involve collaboration with an oral surgeon. While the goal of both orthodontists and oral surgeons is to preserve oral health and give you a beautiful smile, an orthodontist might recommend visiting an oral surgeon for tooth extractions.

Necessary Extractions for a Flawless Smile

Tooth extractions are only recommended by orthodontists as a last resort, after careful consideration of all treatment options. Like oral surgeons, it’s important to remember that orthodontists prioritize your teeth and jaw’s long-term health and function. Here are some instances where tooth extractions might be necessary during orthodontic treatment:

  • Wisdom Teeth Removal Before Treatment: Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, often emerge later in life and can sometimes crowd or misalign existing teeth. To prevent future complications and ensure sufficient space for proper alignment during orthodontic treatment, wisdom teeth removal may be recommended.
  • Impacted Adult Teeth: Occasionally, baby teeth may not fall out naturally, or adult teeth can become trapped beneath them. In these cases, tooth extractions become necessary to expose the impacted adult teeth and allow them to erupt into their correct positions through orthodontic intervention.
  • Severe Overcrowding and Treatment Efficiency: In some cases, patients may have severe overcrowding of teeth. While braces or aligners can address crowding, tooth extractions can create additional space that may be necessary to allow orthodontic devices to work efficiently. Additionally, extractions can help prevent future complications caused by excessive crowding, such as difficulty cleaning teeth or an increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Severely Decayed or Compromised Teeth: A thorough examination will be conducted during the initial orthodontic consultation. If a tooth is found to be severely decayed, infected, or otherwise compromised beyond repair, an extraction may be recommended to prevent further complications and ensure the overall health and stability of the remaining teeth during orthodontic treatment.

Considering Tooth Extractions for Your Orthodontic Treatment?

Understanding the reasons why tooth extractions might be recommended as part of your orthodontic treatment plan empowers you to make informed decisions about your oral health. Here at Mercer Island Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, we work closely with orthodontists to promote a seamless and successful treatment experience for shared patients. Our team of highly skilled and experienced oral surgeons can perform tooth extractions safely and comfortably, paving the way for a healthy and beautiful smile achieved through orthodontics.

Thinking about tooth extractions as part of your orthodontic treatment? Learn more about our tooth extraction procedures and how Mercer Island Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery can collaborate with your orthodontist to achieve your dream smile. Explore the tooth extraction methods we offer and gain valuable insights into the procedure itself.