Many people have undergone the wisdom tooth removal surgery and generally have some dreadful memories of it. The pain, bleeding, and swelling that comes with wisdom teeth removal recovery sticks in many people’s memories. According to a survey, almost two million people get their wisdom teeth extracted. But even so, many of us know relatively little about it. Why do people have wisdom teeth? How do you know if your wisdom teeth should be removed? And exactly how much does it cost to remove those wisdom teeth? It is quite essential to clear things up before you opt to have your wisdom teeth extracted.
What Do You Mean By Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars. The first set of molars—flatter teeth basically used to grind food down—and the second set of molars are permanent teeth to erupt for most humans. People usually get four wisdom teeth—two on the top and two on the bottom behind the first and second set of molars. Well, it is quite possible to have less than four wisdom teeth, and sometimes have more than four (called supernumerary wisdom teeth) and some people don’t develop any at all!
Why Should You Take Wisdom Teeth Out?
Wisdom teeth are visible usually between the ages of 17 and 25, and they're spotted on X-rays. There are several reasons why people get them removed:
- Wisdom Teeth Are Impacted. Because the wisdom teeth are so far back in the mouth, they may not grow normally. They get trapped in the jawbone or gums, which can be extremely painful.
- Wisdom Teeth Come In At The Wrong Angle. They may press against your other teeth.
- The presence of wisdom teeth cause crowding of other teeth or move other teeth and make them crooked
- Wisdom teeth do not grow appropriately as there is less space for their growth. Therefore, they grow in sideways or another undesirable position (often tilted forward).
- The Mouth Isn’t Big Enough. Generally, the jaw does not have more room for an extra set of molars. Therefore, the wisdom teeth grow in the compact space.
- If You Have Cavities or Gum Disease, You Should Remove The Wisdom Teeth. Wisdom teeth are very difficult to reach while brushing or flossing.
- If you do not remove the wisdom tooth, it will continue to cause tooth decay or infections (food and bacteria can get trapped when wisdom teeth partially erupt).
Is It Necessary For Everyone To Get Their Wisdom Teeth Removed?
Well, no. If your wisdom teeth grow completely and remain free from cavities and pain, they don’t need to be removed. But you must have regular visits to your dentists as your wisdom teeth will need to be monitored by regular exams, dental cleanings, and through X-rays. This is essential to ensure that there aren’t changes.
What Would Happen If You Don’t Get Your Wisdom Teeth Removed?
It is always advisable to consult with your dentist to discuss why you don’t want your wisdom teeth removed if they recommend doing so for your oral health. Due to their location in the back of your mouth, it’s often hard to keep the area clean. Special care needs to be taken by brushing and flossing the area.
How Do Your Dentists Know That You Need To Remove Your Wisdom Teeth?
The dentists would ask you to undergo physical examinations and an x-ray test. These examinations and tests would help the dentist to determine whether it’s the time to remove your wisdom teeth or not.
Is Wisdom Teeth Extraction Expensive? How Much Would It Cost To Get The Wisdom Teeth Removed?
The overall cost of the wisdom tooth extraction surgery depends on the various situations. For example, some people might only get one wisdom tooth extracted and might only require local anesthesia, while another has five impacted teeth and needs to go under general anesthesia. Before you opt for wisdom teeth removal, just check the dental insurance plans that will cover the expense of this surgery. Generally, surgery is not expensive.
Wisdom tooth extraction is a complex surgery and depending on the complexity, it is performed either by a dentist or an oral surgeon.
The wisdom tooth removal surgery itself shouldn’t hurt, because the patient is under the effect of general anesthesia. The pain can be experienced in the days following surgery. The amount of discomfort depends on the extent of the surgery, whether or not you use pain medication, and of course, your own pain threshold. But most people experience some level of discomfort for three or more days.