Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt within the mouth. When they align properly and gum tissue is healthy, wisdom teeth do not have to be removed. Unfortunately, this does not generally happen. The extraction of wisdom teeth is necessary when they are prevented from properly erupting within the mouth. They may grow sideways, partially emerge from the gum, and even remain trapped beneath the gum and bone. Impacted teeth can take many positions in the bone as they attempt to find a pathway that will allow them to successfully erupt.
These poorly positioned impacted teeth can cause many problems. When they are partially erupted, the opening around the teeth allows bacteria to grow and will eventually cause an infection. The result is swelling, stiffness, pain, and illness. The most serious problem occurs when tumors or cysts form around the impacted wisdom teeth, resulting in the destruction of the jawbone and healthy teeth. Removal of the offending impacted teeth usually resolves these problems. Early removal is recommended to avoid such future problems and to decrease the surgical risk involved with the procedure.
With an examination and x-rays of the mouth, Doctor Olsen can evaluate the position of the wisdom teeth and predict if there are present or may be future problems. Studies have shown that early evaluation and treatment result in a better outcome for the patient. Patients are generally first evaluated in the mid-teenage years.
In most cases, the removal of wisdom teeth is performed with IV sedation for your comfort. Laughing gas (nitrous oxide/oxygen analgesia) or local anesthesia are also available. These options, as well as the surgical risks (i.e., sensory nerve damage, sinus complications), will be discussed with you before the procedure is performed. Once the teeth are removed, sometimes the gum is sutured. To help control bleeding, bite down on the gauze placed in your mouth. You will rest under our supervision in the office until you are ready to be taken home.
Upon discharge, you will leave with postoperative instructions, a prescription for pain medication, antibiotics, and a follow-up appointment in one week to make sure everything is healing well. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us at (303) 597-9700.
Our services are provided in an environment that utilizes modern monitoring equipment and staff who are experienced in anesthesia techniques for your safety.
Doctor Olsen has been removing wisdom teeth for over 20 years and is ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support).
“Dr. Olsen removed my wisdom teeth and I don’t remember a thing! I had very little pain afterwards and it was much easier than I ever thought it would be. Thanks, Dr. Olsen.”
– Ashley Waddoups