Wisdom tooth extraction
Costs, procedure, and why we do it
Stop the clichés! “Those who seek wisdom are wise, those who think they have found it are fools” (Seneca, 1st-century philosopher), “and those who extract wisdom teeth are surgeons” (CHD philosopher).
Wisdom teeth (the third molars) appear in late adolescence. Since most young adults don’t have enough space for these teeth to fully emerge, they remain fully or partially impacted.
First things first
During the first consultation, the surgeon will take a panoramic X-ray to analyse the number, position, and roots of your wisdom teeth. In some cases, you may need a “3D Cone Beam” CT scan to give us more details so we can plan the surgery in 3 dimensions. Lastly, we’ll give you a preoperative prescription and provide you with a cost estimate.
Wisdom tooth extraction at the CHD
Wisdom teeth have a high risk of infection and can cause inflammation in the surrounding tissue. They can also lead to cysts or benign tumours and cause cavities or root resorption in adjacent teeth. Extraction is often the best way to prevent these problems.
We now have minimally invasive and very rigorous protocols to extract wisdom teeth that make the process much less traumatic for the soft tissue, which has considerably reduced postoperative sensitivity.
It’s essential for a dentist trained in the surgical procedure to extract the tooth, since they’ll proceed much more quickly. This improves patient comfort and shortens postoperative recovery.We remove wisdom teeth at your pace. We adapt to your needs and you can count on our experience and our gentleness to make the best of this dreaded procedure!
At the end of the session, your dentist will give you personalized recommendations on good oral health practices following your wisdom tooth extraction.
On estimate after evaluation from 150 to 500.-
You can pay by invoice and in instalments.
Wisdom tooth extraction is often seen as an invasive procedure that can cause swelling. With today’s gentle methods, this postoperative problem rarely occurs. Most of the time, the healing process is quick and patients return to work the next day.
Dresse Schaer, Surgeon – CHD Lausanne.
Why do I have wisdom teeth?
Your wisdom teeth are your 3rd molars, located in the far back of your mouth.
They are large and flat with 4 or 5 cuspids, so they help chew and grind your food like all your other molars. They also help hold your lower jaw in place and keep it from shifting forward.
Due to evolution, however, it is increasingly rare for wisdom teeth to erupt normally and they are losing their role in the chewing process.
Today’s increasingly soft diets mean we don’t need their chewing power as much as our ancestors.
Recent studies have shown that wisdom teeth are no longer essential for a balanced set of teeth.
Why should I have my wisdom teeth removed?
While not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed, the procedure is increasingly common for both functional and anatomical reasons.
Our diet has changed and become much softer than at any point in history: we don’t eat raw meat and most of the foods we do eat are softened by cooking.
Softer food means less stimulation for our jaws, and that in turn has shrunk our chewing muscles and even our jawbone, or mandible.
Those smaller jawbones don’t have enough room for wisdom teeth to erupt the right way, forcing them to grow in abnormal positions. Abnormal wisdom tooth growth can cause:
- cavities (since they are difficult to clean),
- resorption of neighboring teeth,
- gum inflammation and jaw tension.
We are seeing a steady increase in the number of emergencies caused by wisdom teeth and in the need to prescribe antibiotics for wisdom tooth infections.
All those factors explain why most people today have their wisdom teeth removed, unless:
- they have plenty of room,
- their wisdom teeth came in straight,
- and they can clean their wisdom teeth effectively enough to keep dental plaque from stagnating and causing cavities.
Wisdom tooth extraction can benefit you in two different ways:
- If your wisdom teeth are still developing, having them removed is a risk prevention, or prophylactic, measure.
- If they have already started to cause trouble, extraction can fix those problems before they become too serious.
What happens when you have a wisdom tooth removed?
Thanks to contemporary techniques, wisdom tooth removal today is non-traumatic and performed under local anesthesia.
Your dentist will numb the area and then retract your gum to reach your wisdom tooth.
In most cases, your dentist won’t need scary, old fashioned instruments like pliers. Instead, they will simply lever your tooth out of its socket.
If your wisdom tooth’s roots are curved or diverge from each other, your dentist will separate them and remove them individually.
Once the entire tooth is out, your dentist will clean the socket and stitch it closed.
Like with any surgery, no matter how minor, it’s important to follow your dentist’s post-operative instructions to the letter, especially during the first 48 hours after surgery.
My wisdom tooth is coming in and it hurts. How can I get relief?
There are lots of reasons your wisdom teeth could be hurting (cavities, infections, inflammation, resorption of a neighboring tooth, pressure from a cyst on a nerve caused by a wisdom tooth, etc.) so there’s no single miracle cure.
However, wisdom tooth pain can usually be relieved with anti-inflammatory pain medication.
If your wisdom teeth are causing pain as they come in, we recommend:
- Brushing the area to reduce local inflammation
- Using a chlorhexidine-based mouthwash
- Taking a pain reliever like acetaminophen and possibly an anti-inflammatory like ibuprofen as well
But the best advice is always to make an emergency dentist appointment to get relief and prevent any infection from spreading.
Can I keep my wisdom teeth?
Yes, some people can keep their wisdom teeth. But for that to be an option, a few things need to be true:
- You have adequate space for your wisdom teeth to erupt fully and in line with your other teeth
- Your wisdom teeth are clean, cavity free, and properly aligned
- Or they are fully embedded in the gum, in a position where extraction would generate more risks than benefits.
This can be the case if your wisdom teeth are in contact with your inferior alveolar nerve, in which case extraction could cause nerve damage.