Wisdom tooth removal is a common procedure that many people need as they reach adulthood. Dr. Matthew Streelman provides wisdom tooth removal for the people of Bellevue at Mercer Island Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.
Why Do So Many People Need Wisdom Tooth Removal?
Most of your adult teeth emerge by the time you are 13 years old. However, many people have a third set of molars commonly referred to as wisdom teeth. Most people have four wisdom teeth, two each on the upper and lower arches. However, some people only have one set, and some have none at all.
When present, wisdom teeth typically emerge between the ages of 17 and 21. However, there is often not enough room. As these teeth emerge, they can push other teeth out of alignment or press too closely together with them. When your wisdom teeth push your other teeth too close together, they cause a variety of problems. Closing the gaps between teeth provides shelter for bacteria. This makes brushing and flossing less effective at preventing tooth decay and gum disease.
If your wisdom teeth are impacted as they emerge – that is, they are fully or partially caught under gums, bone, or other teeth – then they increase the risk of serious infection. They create small gaps and pockets in which bacteria can enter and thrive in.
Wisdom tooth removal in Bellevue, WA, helps prevent these risks when issues are identified and treated early. If you do not seek wisdom tooth removal when needed, you could require orthodontic treatment or other interventions down the line.
Do You Need Wisdom Teeth Removal?
If you have been keeping up with regular dental checkups, then your dentist should be able to identify when wisdom tooth removal may be necessary. They may refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon like Dr. Streelman for consultation and treatment.
Sensitivity and discomfort at the back of the mouth are common signs that your wisdom teeth may be emerging and causing problems. While other issues can cause these symptoms as well, they are well worth checking out in any case. Some other common symptoms can include gum inflammation and bad breath caused by the growth of bacteria in your mouth. You might even experience cysts or fluid-filled sacs in your mouth. You should not hesitate to seek treatment for any of these issues.
Wisdom Tooth Removal by an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
If you notice any signs or your doctor tells you that you need wisdom tooth removal, then going with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon is likely your best option. They have the specific experience and skills needed for these complex extractions.
You can achieve good oral health outcomes by seeking out treatment as soon as you know you need it. Dr. Streelman can carry out wisdom tooth removal even in complex cases involving impaction and other complications.
While some dentists offer wisdom teeth removal, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon specializes in this treatment. Wisdom tooth removal can often be complicated, so you want treatment from a specialist who can handle any case.
Your Wisdom Tooth Removal
Whether you or your dentist have noticed issues, the first step in your treatment will be a consultation with Dr. Streelman. He will carefully evaluate your teeth and surrounding tissue, looking for other oral health concerns as well.
X-rays and other digital imaging techniques will provide a clear look at your wisdom teeth. These technologies enable Dr. Streelman to determine whether and how impacted your wisdom teeth are to carefully plan your procedure.
In most cases, you will have all of your wisdom teeth removed during a single procedure. This minimizes the number of visits and your recovery time, providing a better overall treatment experience. More complex cases may separate procedures. Regardless of the complexity of the surgery, you will receive anesthesia from our dental anaesthesiologist, Dr. Michelle Modad, to help you stay comfortable. We offer both local anesthesia and IV sedation. Local anesthesia is often sufficient for simple cases, while IV sedation is suitable for longer procedures.
Your procedure will vary depending on your specific case. For wisdom teeth removal, it is generally necessary to make an incision along the gums for Dr. Streelman to access the tooth. In a few cases, some bone tissue removal is necessary as well.
Depending on the location of the wisdom tooth and whether there is impaction, Dr. Streelman may remove it in one piece. In other cases, the tooth must be removed in smaller pieces to complete the procedure.
Wisdom Tooth Removal Recovery
Immediately after the procedure, Dr. Streelman will apply gauze bandages to the incision sites to stop any bleeding. You will receive specific instructions about aftercare. Make sure to have a ride home afterward, as sedation can take some time to wear off.
You may experience discomfort and swelling in the area for the first 24 to 48 hours after your wisdom tooth removal. Beyond that, you may still experience some soreness, but you should not need more than two or three days off of work or school.
During recovery, you should stick to soft foods such as soup, yogurt, applesauce, and mashed potatoes. Over-the-counter medication and ice packs can help provide relief during recovery, or you can ask about prescription medication if needed.
Schedule Your Wisdom Teeth Removal in Bellevue, WA
Whether for simple or complex cases, the people of Bellevue, WA, can count on Dr. Streelman at Mercer Island Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery for professional treatment. You can prevent many long-term issues by contacting us today to book your wisdom tooth removal.