What are some potential complications associated with the removal of wisdom teeth?

wisdom tooth removal ChicagoPatients gain a number of benefits when they have their wisdom teeth removed, including reduced risk of infection and abscesses and a lower likelihood of misaligned teeth.

To take advantage of those benefits, and avoid some serious problems, a large number of patients decide to have their wisdom teeth extracted each year.  Before doing so, though, it’s important to be adequately prepared for the process.

After all, wisdom teeth removal is actually a surgical procedure, not a dental one, and any appointment with an oral surgeon raises the possibility, however remote, of complications.  The fact that surgery is being performed makes it even more important to have the procedure performed by a highly trained oral and maxillofacial surgeon, rather than just a regular dentist, who is incapable of handling any potential complications and who is not skilled in the procedure. 

Patients gain a number of benefits when they have their wisdom teeth removed, including reduced risk of infection and abscesses and a lower likelihood of misaligned teeth.

As is the case with any surgery, patients who pursue wisdom teeth removal do face certain risks. One of the main concerns following wisdom teeth extraction is dry sockets. If everything goes as expected, the patient will develop a blood clot at the extraction site that offers an extra layer of protection during the first few days of the healing.

If that blood clot is dislodged prematurely or never fully forms to begin with, it can lead to the painful inflammation of clotless – dry sockets.

Other potential complications of wisdom tooth extraction include excessive pain, bleeding or swelling, infection, sinus perforations and ongoing numbness in the area of the mouth. Additionally, the sedation aspect also holds a minute associated with that treatment. None of these issues are necessarily common in wisdom tooth extraction, but the patient should be aware that they may occur.

Older patients face a higher risk of complications than those who have their wisdom teeth extracted in their late teens or early twenties. The surgery tends to be more complex for patients beyond their mid-twenties. The roots are longer and more integrated with the jawbone, creating more challenges in removing the teeth.

Although patients can face complications following wisdom tooth extraction, they can also take steps to help prevent those bad outcomes. Our Chicago oral and maxillofacial surgeons can recommend a post-surgical regimen to decrease your chances of developing a problem. For example, patients are encouraged to avoid drinking through straws for the first few days after the procedure. This helps cut down on the risk of dry sockets.

For more information on wisdom teeth removal in Chicago Illinois, and the potential risks and complications associated with extraction of a wisdom tooth, please visit our website and refer to the informed consent forms within the patient resources section.  Also feel free to contact ORA® Oral Surgery & Implant Studio at 312-328-9000.