Wisdom Teeth Removal

Wisdom teeth can cause a variety of problems, such as infection, pain, swelling, or impaction, if they are not removed early or emerge incorrectly in the mouth.

Wisdom Teeth Removal in Birmingham, AL

Wisdom teeth, also called third molars, are well-known for causing oral health complications, and most dental care professionals recommend they be removed in the early teen years—even if they are not yet causing issues—to avoid problems in the future. Overcrowding, impaction (a tooth that is trapped under the gums), infection, pain, cysts, and more are all possible if the wisdom teeth go untreated. Younger patients tend to have less complicated extractions and faster recovery times.

Wisdom teeth begin to develop in the jaw in the early teen years and emerge around the ages of 17 to 23. To avoid the complications that commonly come along with wisdom teeth, the best thing to do is to make sure everyone in your family sees a dentist for regular examinations, imaging, and cleanings at least twice a year. This is particularly important for children in the early and mid-teens so that their wisdom teeth can be tracked as they develop. When it’s time to have them removed, your dentist will recommend an evaluation with an experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeon with advanced surgical training to plan the extraction procedure—removing the wisdom teeth is typically more complicated than a standard tooth extraction. Dr. Roden and Dr. Alling have years of experience removing wisdom teeth in the comfort of their Birmingham practice and provide the full scope of anesthesia and sedation options for their patients’ well-being and comfort.

We find that many of our patients are more at ease about their upcoming wisdom teeth procedure when they listen to stories from other patients who have undergone this procedure at our practice. We encourage you to check out our Patient Stories page.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth

When the wisdom teeth are impacted, they have become blocked by overlying gum and/or bone tissue and are unable to erupt correctly into the mouth. Sometimes problem wisdom teeth have no symptoms, even when they are becoming impacted, so dental exams are crucial for tracking the development of these molars. If any discomfort or swelling in the area behind the back molars does occur, or if you notice an unpleasant taste or smell in the mouth indicating an infection, you should schedule a dental examination as soon as possible to find out if the wisdom teeth have become infected and require extraction to protect your oral health.

Impacted wisdom teeth may have any of these noticeable symptoms:

  • Swelling, pain, pressure, and/or sensitivity near the back of your mouth and jaws
  • Pain when opening or closing the mouth
  • Persistent bad breath
  • An unpleasant taste in the mouth (indicating an infection)

The oral surgeons of Roden Oral, Facial, and Dental Implant Surgery are dedicated to offering you and your family the very best care when wisdom teeth extraction is necessary. If an impacted wisdom tooth is causing pain or problems, or if you or your child have been recommended for an extraction procedure, please contact us to schedule an evaluation with one of our trusted oral surgeons.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Process

The process begins with a consultation appointment with your oral surgeon for an oral examination and appropriate imaging. The location, size, and depth of the wisdom teeth will be evaluated to create a personalized treatment plan, including the type of anesthesia that will be best for you or your child’s comfort. Our doctors are experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeons and are trained in the safe administration of in-office anesthesia, and you or your child will be carefully monitored at all times by our attentive and highly trained clinical team.

We offer several types of anesthesia for wisdom teeth removal, including

  • Local anesthesia. Local anesthesia is used in all oral surgeries, usually in combination with other forms of anesthesia. Local anesthesia is applied directly to the surgical site and rapidly calms the sensation of pain in the area.
  • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas). Nitrous oxide is an inhaled gas that has been used in dentistry for many years for a mild pain-relieving effect during procedures while also relieving anxiety in the patient. Nitrous oxide is typically used along with other types of anesthesia. It’s called laughing gas because sometimes patients will feel giddy or even laugh out loud when receiving this type of anesthesia.
  • Intravenous (IV) sedation. In most cases, wisdom teeth extraction is performed under intravenous (IV) sedation that puts the patient in a sleep-like state with no awareness of the procedure taking place. Patients who choose IV sedation must not have anything to eat or drink (excluding prescription medications with a small sip of water) for at least 6 hours before receiving the anesthesia. A responsible driver must be arranged ahead of time to drive the patient home after surgery and must stay in the office reception area during the procedure.

If you or your child has been recommended for wisdom teeth removal, or if you or your child is experiencing discomfort that you suspect may be related to the wisdom teeth, we encourage you to request a consultation with one of our trusted oral surgeons so that a personalized treatment plan can be created for appropriate treatment. We appreciate the opportunity to treat you and your family to outstanding oral surgery care in our safe and compassionate practice.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Cost in Birmingham, AL

At our practice, we offer outstanding care at competitive prices for the Birmingham, Alabama, area and are dedicated to providing convenient financial options. During your consultation appointment at our practice, your oral surgeon will create a surgical plan for you or your child that will also include the estimated cost for the wisdom teeth extraction. This estimate will be based on a few factors: how many teeth will be extracted, the type of anesthesia that is chosen for the procedure, your insurance coverage, and if and how the wisdom teeth are impacted.

Making an Investment in Your Oral Health

Most dental professionals agree that wisdom teeth should be extracted early, usually in the early to mid-teen years, to avoid future costly and uncomfortable problems such as cyst formation and infection that may require orthodontic or surgical treatments to correct late. It’s wise to take a proactive approach to wisdom teeth!

Early wisdom teeth removal is practical and cost-effective for many reasons, including

  • Less chance of related oral health issues in the future. Dental shifting, oral infections, gum disease, impaction, and damage or crowding of nearby teeth are all possibilities when wisdom teeth remain untreated. Extraction can prevent these costly and uncomfortable issues before they occur.
  • Easier surgery and a faster recovery. Younger patients often have much faster recoveries because their wisdom teeth haven’t fully developed in the jaw and are, therefore, easier to remove. An easy procedure and quick healing equal less time away from work or school and less discomfort!

We are dedicated to making payment convenient by maximizing your insurance reimbursement for covered procedures and offering multiple payment methods. We also offer CareCredit®, and our knowledgeable staff can help you apply for this financing option. Please contact us with any questions or concerns you may have. We are happy to help guide you through the process of wisdom teeth extraction and its cost.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Instructions

The team at Roden Oral, Facial, and Dental Implant Surgery will take excellent care of you before, during, and after your procedure. Your safety and comfort are priorities, and since you are an important part of your care team too, it is important that you follow our detailed pre- and post-operative self-care instructions throughout your oral surgery process for the very best outcome and a fast and easy recovery without post-operative complications.

Wisdom Teeth Removal FAQ

Will my wisdom teeth extraction be painful?

Our oral surgeons administer intravenous (IV) sedation to patients before their wisdom teeth extraction procedure so that they will experience no sensation of pain and are unaware of the extraction taking place. The patient will receive a prescription for pain medication to control any post-operative discomfort, but our patients often find that over-the-counter pain medications take care of it.

Are wisdom teeth always extracted?

Human jaws are often too small to accommodate these extra molars without causing oral health problems, though not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed. Some people are lucky enough to be born without any wisdom teeth at all or just one, two, or three of them! During regular visits, your family dentist will track the development of your or your child’s wisdom teeth and will indicate if and when extraction is recommended. You will be referred to a trusted oral surgeon for extraction if the teeth are positioned poorly, are impacted, or are likely to become impacted. Early proactive treatment for wisdom teeth can save time, money, and discomfort. Most dental professionals recommend early removal in the early to mid-teen years.

Why doesn’t my dentist extract my wisdom teeth?

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons like the doctors at Roden Oral, Facial, and Dental Implant Surgery have the correct training and experience in both oral surgery and anesthesia to safely remove the wisdom teeth and address any complications that can occur. Since most wisdom teeth extractions are performed early, before the molars have erupted into the mouth, the process for removing them goes beyond the scope of most general dentist’s training.

What is the recovery like after wisdom teeth removal?

Some swelling and discomfort can be expected after your procedure, and there may be a little bleeding as well. This is all perfectly normal. Your recovery time will depend on your particular procedure and how your teeth were impacted, but in all cases, there are a few things our wisdom teeth patients can do to make their recovery period go smoothly. Plan on taking it easy for a couple of days and be sure to stick to a soft-food diet for at least a day or two. Ice packs can help bring the swelling down, and while you may be prescribed a pain prescription to help you with any post-surgical discomfort, over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen tend to work well for keeping our patients comfortable. Your oral surgeon will give you detailed instructions on everything you should do and not do after your procedure—make sure you follow these instructions closely, and you will be back to your regular activities in no time.

Other questions?

We are dedicated to providing patient care that exceeds our patients’ expectations. If you are ready to request a consultation at our inviting practice in Birmingham, Alabama, feel free to contact us today. You and your family are in excellent hands with Drs. Roden and Alling.