If you are considering getting braces, you may have been told that you need to have your wisdom teeth removed before starting treatment. While this may seem like an unnecessary extra step, there are several reasons why it is often recommended.
Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, typically emerge between the ages of 17 and 25. Many people do not have enough room in their mouths to accommodate these teeth, leading to crowding and misalignment. When you undergo orthodontic treatment, your teeth gradually shift into the correct position, and wisdom teeth can interfere with this process.
Wisdom teeth can also cause other oral health issues. They are more difficult to clean, leading to an increased risk of cavities and gum disease. In some cases, wisdom teeth can become impacted, meaning they are unable to emerge fully, which can cause pain, infection, and damage to neighboring teeth.
In some cases, dentists recommend removing your wisdom teeth before starting orthodontic treatment. This is because the presence of wisdom teeth can affect the movement of your teeth during treatment, leading to delays or complications. Your orthodontist will evaluate if this is your case.
Removing your wisdom teeth before braces also means that your orthodontist has a clear and unobstructed view of your teeth and can plan treatment more effectively. It can also prevent wisdom teeth from causing damage or complications during the course of your orthodontic treatment.
However, in some cases, it may be necessary to remove wisdom teeth after the completion of orthodontic treatment. This may be because the teeth have emerged more fully and are causing issues, or because they were not causing any problems initially.
While orthodontists specialize in straightening teeth, they do not receive training to perform surgical extractions like the removal of wisdom teeth. In most cases, a general dentist or an oral surgeon will be responsible for the extraction of wisdom teeth. Your orthodontist can provide a referral to a qualified dental professional to remove your wisdom teeth before or during your orthodontic treatment. It is important to have a discussion with your orthodontist and dental professional to determine the best course of action for your specific case.
The thought of removal of your wisdom teeth can be intimidating, but the procedure is generally safe and straightforward. Your dentist or oral surgeon will administer anesthesia to ensure that you are comfortable throughout the procedure. They will then remove the wisdom teeth through a small incision in the gums.
After the procedure, you may experience some swelling and discomfort, but this can be manageable with over-the-counter pain medication and ice packs. You will also need to follow a soft food diet and avoid vigorous activity for several days to allow your mouth to heal properly.
In conclusion, having your wisdom teeth removed before starting orthodontic treatment might be recommended to prevent complications and ensure the best possible outcome for your treatment. Your orthodontist will be able to assess your specific situation and advise you on the best course of action.
If you are considering getting braces and are unsure about whether you need to have your wisdom teeth removed, talk to your orthodontist first. They will be able to provide you with more information and help you make an informed decision. Remember, taking care of your oral health before and during orthodontic treatment is essential for achieving a healthy and beautiful smile.