Our commitment to our patients is to provide the most advanced level of care possible. One of the dentists on the Kumeu Dental team is a senior registrar in oral and maxillofacial surgery, with a degree in both medicine and dentistry. Because of this, Kumeu Dental is able to provide a variety of advanced oral surgery and implant procedures to our patients at our home office. We are also able to provide intravenous sedation to ensure patient comfort during treatment.
The third set of molars are typically called wisdom teeth and usually erupt between the ages of 17 to 25. While there are normally four wisdom teeth (one in each quadrant of the mouth), it isn’t uncommon for some people to have more or less.
Impacted wisdom teeth occur when the wisdom teeth do not erupt in proper alignment with adjacent teeth. The teeth may be erupting at an angle and forcibly push into the side of the next tooth, or grow sideways or backward. This misalignment prevents the tooth from ever being able to erupt straightly. This type of environment predisposes the tooth and adjacent teeth to developing bone disease, gum disease and tooth decay. Typical problems associated with wisdom teeth include:
- Infection: pain and swelling often accompany impacted wisdom teeth. Antibiotics may be necessary to help eliminate initial infections prior to surgical removal of the tooth. Infected wisdom teeth often cause discomfort and extended recovery time.
- Decay and damage to adjacent teeth: because wisdom teeth are often difficult or impossible to keep clean, they have an increased rate of decay. The tooth decay can also spread to adjacent teeth, so removal of the wisdom teeth is proactive in preventing advancement of disease.
- Bone loss and gum disease: the inability to floss around partially erupted or impacted wisdom teeth allows bacteria to enter under the gumlines and cause gum disease. Gum disease, including bone loss, affects adjacent teeth and causes a chain reaction throughout the mouth. Crowding from the pressure of impacted wisdom teeth can also cause tooth misalignment in the rest of the mouth. On rare occasions, cysts may occur around developing wisdom teeth. These cysts can cause irreversible damage to the jaw bone.
It may be necessary to remove wisdom teeth if they are impacted, or depending on their location in relation to other teeth. Many wisdom teeth are difficult to keep clean and are of very little use due to their location. The best time to have wisdom teeth removed is during your late teens or early 20′s, due to the elasticity and growth of the jaw, which promotes quicker healing time.
Patients also have the option to utilize Kumeu Dental’s sedation services. For some patients, their dental anxiety is so severe that gentle care isn’t enough. We offer in-house IV sedation services to help calm even the most hesitant of patients. By utilizing these adjunctive services, you can receive the necessary care to restore the health of your smile.