Keeping regular six-month dental appointments for cleaning and checkups enables your dentist to monitor the growth and emergence of your wisdom teeth.
If you're experiencing pain, swollen gums or other dental problems that may indicate an impacted wisdom tooth, see your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist may recommend an oral surgeon if your impacted wisdom teeth are likely to be difficult to treat.
Be prepared to answer the following questions:
Apr. 11, 2012
- When did your symptoms begin?
- Does anything worsen symptoms, such as chewing toward the back of your mouth?
- Have you noticed any bleeding while brushing or flossing your teeth?
- What are your typical teeth-cleaning habits?
- Wisdom teeth. American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons. http://www.aaoms.org/wisdom_teeth.php. Accessed Feb. 21, 2012.
- Marciani RD. Third molar removal: An overview of indications, imaging, evaluation, and assessment of risk. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America. 2007;19:1.
- Bagheri SC, et al. Extraction versus nonextraction management of third molars. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America. 2007;19:15.
- Haug RH, et al. Evidenced-based decision making: The third molar. Dental Clinics of North America. 2009;53:77.
- Gingivitis. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dental_disorders/periodontal_disorders/gingivitis.html. Accessed Feb. 22, 2012.
- Caries. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dental_disorders/common_dental_disorders/caries.html. Accessed Feb. 22, 2012.
- Kandasamy S, et al. The wisdom behind third molar extractions. Australian Dental Journal. 2009;54:284.
- Farish SE, et al. General technique of third molar removal. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinics of North America. 2007;19:23.
- Postextraction problems. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/dental_disorders/dental_emergencies/postextraction_problems.html. Accessed Feb. 23, 2012.
- Dental anxiety. American Dental Association. http://www.ada.org/3102.aspx. Accessed Feb. 23, 2012.
- White RP Jr., et al. Evaluation and management of asymptomatic third molars: Lack of symptoms does not equate to lack of pathology. American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics. 2011;140:10.
- Kandasamy S. Evaluation and management of asymptomatic third molars: Watchful monitoring is a low-risk alternative to extraction. American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics. 2011;140:11.
- Carr AB (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 22, 2012.
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