Gentle Molar Extractions in Harker Heights
Wisdom teeth are your third and final set of molars. Their nickname stems from the fact that they don’t come in until a person is older (though not necessarily wiser). Your first set of permanent molars typically grows in by age 6 or 7, and you can expect the second molars to surface between ages 12 and 14. The third set typically erupts around age 17, but they may come in as late as your mid-20s.
Problems arise with these back teeth when there isn’t enough room in your mouth. They might grow in crooked, which can knock your other teeth out of alignment. They also might only erupt part of the way or stay completely underneath your gums. An impacted wisdom tooth is not only painful, it can also cause long-term damage.
We use the latest techniques and best practices to remove your wisdom teeth gently and safely, if necessary. Any recommendation to move forward with a procedure would be made only after a thorough pre-extraction exam. This may include an X-ray if you’re a new patient, or if you haven’t had any diagnostic imaging of your mouth taken recently.
How a tooth is extracted will depend in part on how much of it is exposed and how much of it remains below the jaw or gum line. Some teeth can be pulled out whole. Others may need to be removed in sections, and stitches may be required to properly close the area following the extraction.
Our gentle wisdom teeth removal procedures are safely done in-house. Let us help you maintain a healthy mouth and prevent further dental problems. Please contact us anytime with questions about this service or to schedule an appointment.
Wisdom Tooth Extraction FAQ
What problems can wisdom teeth cause?
A crooked molar is at a higher risk for tooth decay, even with regular brushing. It also increases your risk for gum disease because it makes flossing more difficult. The partial openings created by an impacted wisdom tooth provide a place for bacteria to enter, leading to infections of the mouth and other illnesses. In extreme cases, cysts and tumors can develop below the jawline, pushing it out of alignment.
How do I know if I need an extraction?
It is normal to experience some discomfort when your wisdom teeth start to erupt. But do not hesitate to contact us if you are experiencing any pain, swelling, or stiffness during those years they are rising to the surface or afterward. Our office can conduct a thorough exam, including the use of digital X-rays, to determine the best course of treatment for you.
Does insurance cover extractions?
Most insurance policies cover wisdom tooth removals. We accept all PPO insurances, as well as Dentaquest, MCNA, and CHIP. For patients who do not use insurance, we offer a low-cost, limited exam, and X-ray that can help you determine your risk for wisdom teeth problems. Learn more about financial considerations.
How long does extraction recovery take?
The first 24 to 48 hours are the most challenging. You may experience bleeding in the area where your wisdom teeth were located, and you may have temporary facial swelling. These symptoms can usually be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers, as well as antibiotics to fight infections.
You’ll have to avoid hot liquids and eat only soft foods for the first few days. But you’ll be able to resume brushing your teeth very quickly, and over a period of weeks, you will be fully healed.