Wisdom teeth (third molars) typically develop in the mouth during adolescence. Because they are the last teeth to mature, they often crowd neighboring teeth, do not align properly, and cause problems within the gums. Studies demonstrate that over 83 percent of people will encounter one of these problems necessitating wisdom teeth removal within their lifetime.
The doctors of Associated Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons have been caring for patients in central Illinois for nearly 50 years. They frequently train other practitioners in surgical techniques at both the regional and national levels. Orthodontists and general dentists refer their Peoria and Galesburg patients to AOS because of our long history of positive outcomes and patient satisfaction.
Wisdom teeth removal patients who visit our offices in Peoria and Galesburg can expect high-quality care and an attentive, gentle approach. We simplify the process for families by streamlining scheduling and treatment. Because we are oral and maxillofacial surgeons, we are also able to conduct procedures using IV sedation and general anesthesia. The treatment experience is significantly more comfortable as a result.
The Purpose of Wisdom Teeth Removal
Many people have wisdom teeth that have become impacted in the jawbone and that never break through the gums. Other people have wisdom teeth that have only partially emerged from the gums or grown out of alignment. These conditions can lead to discomfort, reoccurring infection, and dental crowding.
Even if patients do not experience pain related to their third molars, they may still benefit from wisdom teeth extractions. Removal can help patients avoid more serious problems such as the development of cysts or benign tumors, which can cause long-term dental and sometimes even skeletal damage.
Extracting wisdom teeth at an early age–usually between 14 and 16–can eliminate these risks. Younger patients tend to recover more quickly from wisdom teeth extractions and have a lower chance of complications. However, Associated Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons supports patients of all ages who require treatment. We provide this treatment at our Peoria and Galesburg locations.
AOS’ Approach to Wisdom Teeth Extractions
Our practice takes special care to evaluate patients comprehensively in advance of treatment. Each person’s needs are unique, so a thorough medical history is obtained and reviewed prior to surgery. In addition, imaging is reviewed to give our doctors an enhanced understanding of the mouth, including:
- The number, position, and condition of the wisdom teeth.
- The quality of supporting bone.
- Skeletal anatomic features that may affect surgery.
This advanced knowledge of each patient’s needs helps AOS surgeons plan precise and effective treatment which is delivered at our Peoria and Galesburg facilities. While wisdom teeth extractions are very common procedures, the surgery calls for a high degree of expertise to perform safely and predictably. For example, upper wisdom teeth may be positioned near the sinuses and lower wisdom teeth may be located near a sensory nerve. Both are important to preserve as part of surgery.
Typically, our doctors will extract wisdom teeth that have emerged from the gums in the same way we would extract any other molar tooth. Impacted teeth require a different level of care, however. During these procedures, the doctor will free the tooth from the gums and the surrounding bone and, in some cases, section the tooth to remove it. Our surgeons have extensive experience utilizing these techniques and advanced surgical instrumentation to accomplish the procedure.
What to Expect with Wisdom Teeth Removal
AOS understands that life with teenagers is busy, and your family’s convenience is an important part of our care. Here are some of the benefits of choosing our practice:
- You may be able to complete the initial consultation over the phone, which means no office visit and no missing school or extracurricular activities prior to surgery.
- You can fill out the patient registration and medical history online according to your own
- Your referring dentist or orthodontist may be able to provide X-rays and scans to our office. If these resources aren’t available, AOS can see you on a walk-in basis in Peoria or Galesburg to have them done in advance of wisdom teeth extractions.
Regardless of whether you handle these steps in-office or virtually, your AOS doctor will provide you with a thorough assessment and exemplary care.
Wisdom teeth removal takes place on an outpatient basis. Because we are oral and maxillofacial surgeons, we can offer you the opportunity to have your procedure under IV sedation and/or general anesthesia. This allows you to be completely comfortable throughout the experience. Our nursing staff will monitor your recovery from anesthesia in our Peoria or Galesburg facilities until you meet discharge criteria and can return home the same day as your procedure.
Recovery and Results from Wisdom Teeth Extractions
Most of our Peoria and Galesburg patients have two or three days of downtime after the surgery. For example, if you have your wisdom teeth removed on a Thursday or Friday, you will likely return to normal activity by Monday. Patients who are active with sports may require several days more recovery time before returning to heavy exertional activity.
Recuperating from wisdom teeth extractions is fairly straightforward with only limited homecare instructions. We do recommend a restricted diet of liquid and soft foods for 7-10 days after the procedure. Depending on your surgery, you may not need to come back to AOS for a follow-up visit, but your doctor will always be available to you if you have questions or concerns.
If you or your child needs wisdom teeth removal, schedule a phone consultation or in-person visit with our offices in Peoria and Galesburg. Call or contact AOS online for more information.