Wisdom Teeth Extraction


Our goal at Smiles of Gilbert Dentistry is to help save your teeth versus extracting them. However, when it comes to wisdom teeth, they often need to be extracted for various reasons.

What are Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth also referred to as third molars, are the last of your teeth to develop. They typically erupt around ages 17-25. Many people’s mouths do not have enough room for these wisdom teeth to come in properly and can become impacted.

Why is it Often Suggested to Remove Wisdom Teeth?

Although there are potential problems associated with wisdom teeth, they do not always need to be removed; it is best to visit a dentist, such as our dentist in Gilbert, AZ, to get a professional evaluation. They can advise you based on your specific condition and needs. Since the location of wisdom is in the very back of your mouth, keeping them clean can be difficult. This can lead to problems such as:

  • Tooth decay
  • Infection
  • Periodontal disease
  • Tooth loss
  • Bone loss
  • Overcrowded teeth
  • Damage to surrounding teeth
  • Formation of tumors and cysts

When is the Ideal Age to Remove Wisdom Teeth?

16-18 is typically the ideal age to have wisdom teeth removed. Surgery becomes more complicated, riskier, and more difficult past age 18. It also takes you longer to recover as you get older. Thus, some dentists will even recommend removing wisdom teeth before they start causing problems.

Should I Have My Wisdom Teeth Removed with IV Sedation?

Patients often elect to do IV sedation in wisdom teeth removal. IV sedation is when anesthesia is provided to you via an IV to help you relax and decrease pain during a dental procedure or oral surgery. It is one of the most dependable and predictable ways to help lessen anxiety, awareness, and memory during the procedure. While in sedation, you will be safely breathing on your own under the constant supervision of our doctors. Many patients become so relaxed that they drift in and out of sleep, otherwise known as twilight sleep. Our doctors will use the least amount of anesthesia possible while ensuring you are comfortable. IV Sedation is affordable, highly effective, and also a very safe option.

Pre-Op Instructions for Wisdom Teeth Removal

Dr. Woodsmansee will provide you with pre-op instructions before your surgery. Please review the instructions right away in case you have any questions. You can contact Dr. Woodsmansee or the Smiles of Gilbert staff with any questions. These instructions must be strictly followed for a successful surgery. Click here to read the instructions or print out a copy.

The Surgical Procedure

It is normal for patients to be nervous, especially if this is their first surgery. To ensure your surgery day goes smoothly, make sure that you have reviewed the pre-operative and post-operative instructions. On the day of the surgery, Dr. Woodmansee will review your medical history, go over what to expect, and review the post-op instructions with you. Typically, patients are in the office for approximately 90 minutes.

Post-Op Instructions for Wisdom Teeth Removal

Reviewing the post-operative instructions before your surgery is advised, giving you a better idea of what to expect. The post-op instructions must strictly be followed for a successful and smooth recovery. You can contact Dr. Woodsmansee or the Smiles of Gilbert staff with any questions. Click here to read the instructions or print out a copy.

Known Risks & Complications Associated with Surgery

Common risks associated with any surgery include swelling, bruising, pain, and bleeding. The following are other possible complications with wisdom tooth removal but are uncommon:

  • Infection – any infections should immediately be reported to your surgeon, who will help treat the issue. Signs of infection can include fever, abnormal swelling & pain, salty or prolonged bad taste, and pus formation.
  • Damage to surrounding teeth – damage can occur to other teeth that are close to the wisdom teeth. This often happens on teeth that have large fillings.
  • Nerve Damage – pain, numbness, changed feelings in teeth, lip, chin, gums, tongue (possibly taste loss). Injury or damage can occur since the tooth roots can be very close to these nerves. Typically, the numbness and pain will go away with time, but in some cases, more treatment is needed, or it can be permanent.
  • Joint Pain – TMJ or jaw joint soreness, locking, and pain which can be temporary or permanent.
  • Root Fragments – occasionally, tooth roots may need to be left behind to avoid harm to important structures like nerves or the sinus (hollow cavity above your upper back teeth). This seldomly presents any long-term issues.
  • Sinus Complications – Since the roots of the upper back teeth are close to the sinus, a piece of the root can get into the sinus. Further treatment may be needed if an opening occurs from the sinus into the mouth.
  • Jaw Fracture – is exceptionally rare for the jaw to break, but it is possible if the teeth are buried deep in their sockets.


Contact Smiles of Gilbert Dentistry in Gilbert, AZ, if you have any questions about wisdom teeth removal or want to make an appointment today.


Pre Op Instructions

Pre Op Instructions for Dental Surgery

Post-Operative Instructions

Post operative instructions after dental surgery/ wisdom teeth by Dr. Brent Woodmansee

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