To Keep or To Extract your Wisdom Teeth?

Smiling Middle aged CoupleDo you still have your wisdom teeth in your mouth? Or were they long ago extracted and forgotten about. Either way, they have nothing to do with your intelligence, but they can make the difference between healthy aligned teeth, or crowded, gapped, overlapped, or infected ones. There has been some controversy over the years as to whether or not dentists have become “extraction happy” with wisdom teeth. Are your third molars being removed preventively – a sort of “just in case” – rather than for true need?

Unwise Conceptions

While statistics have guessed that as many as 70% of people will end up with wisdom teeth issues, these numbers tend to be more opinion based. Equal statistics and studies can be found claiming that the number of people that actually have trouble or truly need their wisdom teeth removed are probably much less of a percentage. In the United Kingdom, the National Health Service does not pay for wisdom teeth extraction, believing it to be elective rather than necessary in the majority of cases. Our proactive efforts in the United States may be overkill, as the Cochrane Collaboration collected data showing that wisdom teeth removal could probably be dropped into the 60% range if people waited until they had actual problems with their third molars.

Conservative Extractions

As far as Dr. Maria Loukas and Dr. Thanasi Loukas are concerned, wisdom teeth extraction should primarily be based on issues of pain, swelling, and infection. These things can happen with impacted wisdom teeth, or as a result of decay. Cavities are more common on the furthest back teeth that are harder to reach, and can be easily ignored as such. However, if you have no problems, symptoms, or side effects, your third molars can potentially keep you “wise” for the rest of your life.

About Dr. Maria and Dr. Thanasi Loukas:

Whether you wish to protect your smile from dental disease and damage, or restore your smile after suffering tooth loss, we can help you regain your oral health and confidence through a new and improved smile. Dr. Maria and Dr. Thanasi Loukas are highly-skilled restorative and cosmetic dentists serving the Park Ridge and surrounding Chicago communities. To schedule an appointment, call Loukas General Dentistry today at (847) 696-1919.


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