Wisdom Tooth Extraction Oak Ridge TN

Your mouth goes through many changes in your lifetime. One major dental milestone, that usually takes place between the ages of 17 and 21, is the appearance of your third molars. Historically, these teeth have been called wisdom teeth because they appear at a more mature age.

When they come through correctly, healthy wisdom teeth can help you chew. It’s normal to feel a little discomfort when your wisdom teeth appear as they are erupting through your gums and there often is little room left in the mouth to fit those last teeth in. As a result, they may erupt sideways, only partially, or become trapped (impacted), leading to pain, infection, and gum line and facial swelling. When these conditions arise, your dentist may determine that extraction is necessary.


Although the thought of removing your wisdom teeth may cause some anxiety, there are some risks involved if they are left to come in on their own. Some of the following conditions may occur:

Bone Loss and Jaw Expansion: Impacted wisdom teeth may play a role in bone loss and expansion of the jaw.

Changes in Teeth Alignment: Wisdom teeth may adversely affect the results of orthodontic treatment by crowding the existing teeth.

Congestion: Wisdom teeth may contribute to sinus congestion and headaches.

Cysts and Tumors: Impacted wisdom teeth may be a factor in the development of bone destroying tumors or cysts, including cyst formation in the surrounding gum tissue.

Gum Tissue Irritation: Gum tissue surrounding impacted wisdom teeth tends to be more susceptible to gum irritation. If wisdom teeth do not fully erupt and become crooked, it may become difficult to adequately clean the gums.

Periodontal Pockets and Cavities: Difficulty cleaning gums makes it easy for debris to get lodged, creating the perfect setting for bacteria. The resulting bacteria may produce periodontal pockets, create cavities and lead to bone loss.

Teeth Shifting: Impacted wisdom teeth may shift surrounding teeth, causing bite irregularities and pain.


The actual procedure will take place in our office. You are given an injection of local anesthetic to numb the tooth and surrounding area. Nitrous oxide gas can also be used to make the procedure even less noticeable.

If the tooth hasn’t come through the gum, a small incision will be made in the gum to access it. You’ll feel some pressure just before the tooth is removed but this won’t create any pain because of the anesthesia. Generally the procedure can be completed in 20 minutes or less.

Recovery takes approximately five to seven days, with the gum area being fully healed in approximately three to four weeks. Stitches may be used during your procedure if the wisdom tooth is impacted and must be removed from under the surface of the gum line. If the stitches are not self-dissolving, they will need to be removed postoperatively.


During a dental examination we can diagnose the necessity for a wisdom tooth extraction. An examination can help determine candidacy for extraction and the best means to approach your procedure. It is also used to help identify additional risks that may impact the approach to the procedure, such as the anatomical features of the tooth and surrounding structures.

Ultimately, if you wait to remove wisdom teeth until there is cause for medical concern, the risk for complications increases. We recommend removing potentially problematic wisdom teeth by age 18. If you have questions, please call our office to schedule an appointment for consultation. We look forward to hearing from you!