Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt in your mouth here between the ages of 17 and 25. Typically there is not enough room for these molars to erupt fully or even at all. They may become impacted when there is a lack of space in the dental arch and growth and eruption are prevented by overlying gum, bone or another tooth.

A tooth may be partially impacted, which means a portion of it has broken through the gum, or totally impacted and unable to break through the gum at all. Impacted and partially impacted teeth can be painful and lead to infection. They may also crowd or damage adjacent teeth or roots. Not all problems related to third molars are painful or visible. Damage can occur without your being aware of it. It isn’t wise to wait until your wisdom teeth bother you.

In general, early removal of wisdom teeth results in a less complicated healing process. Most wisdom tooth extractions are performed in the oral and maxillofacial surgery office under local anesthesia, intravenous sedation or general anesthesia. Dr. Tiernan will discuss all the options and their benefits and risks at your consultation appointment to ensure you receive the care best suited for you and your needs.