To Extract or Not to Extract? That is the Question.

To Extract or Not to Extract? That is the Question.

Ahhhh, the famous quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Ok, it’s not the exact quote, but you get the point. When should I get my wisdom teeth removed, if at all, you ask? Since everyone is a little different, it is always best to let your dentist make that call. However, since this can be a somewhat intimidating procedure, let’s take a look at what you can do to be informed and prepared.

Typically wisdom teeth start to appear between ages 15-25, ironically referred to as “The Age of Wisdom”. Normally, they push on the gums, never breaking through to proper chewing height, causing discomfort. A small percentage of people do not get all four wisdom teeth, while a lucky few actually have room in their mouth and get to keep them! Unfortunately, having all your wisdom teeth doesn’t necessarily result in a higher I.Q.

A wisdom tooth is removed to correct a problem or prevent future issues, which could potentially cause you even more pain down the road. These teeth are much easier to remove at a younger age, since the roots are not fully formed and the bone is not as calcified. Yes, this is a minor surgery. Even so, advances in modern medicine have improved the process and recovery time, allowing you to return to your normal activities relatively quickly.

Even though dentistry was not a high priority in the days of William Shakespeare, he probably would have written a very dramatic play about the treachery, pain and eventual relief of having his wisdom teeth removed. To extract or not to extract?… I say we leave that up to your dentist.

by Tarin Keith

Dental Partners of Fifth Avenue
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