Wisdom teeth commonly known as the 3rd molar are the last teeth to erupt within the mouth. When the gum tissue is healthy and the wisdom tooth is properly aligned, the tooth may not have to be removed. For most individuals, this does not generally happen. Extraction of wisdom teeth is necessary when the teeth are prevented from properly erupting within the mouth. Frequently the wisdom teeth grow sideways and partially emerge from the gum and even remain trapped beneath the gum and bone.
Sometimes baby teeth do not exfoliate as they should, and the tooth must be removed to make way for the permanent tooth to erupt. A tooth that decays puts the surrounding teeth and jaw at risk. A tooth may have advanced periodontal disease, or have broken in a way that cannot be repaired. Infection / abscess, orthodontic treatment, problems associated with wisdom teeth, and other anomalies can all require tooth removal. Once removed, your dentist may recommend replacement with a dental implant.
When a tooth is extracted, you lose both the root and the crown. To replace the missing tooth, your dentist may recommend a dental implant. Implants are a great option due to their strength from their composition of titanium. Implant replacements are made of three components: implant, abutment, and the crown. The implant (titanium post) is surgically placed in the bone by the oral surgeon. The restoring dentist will secure the final crown typically several months later.
Implants are anchored into the jaw securely. When adding a dental implant, time is allowed for bone to grow around and into the implant (osseointegration) and heal. The bone bonds with the titanium creating the foundation for a strong artificial tooth. Next the abutment is placed on the implant which builds the base that holds a crown. Finally, the crown is attached to the abutment and the artificial tooth is complete.
On occasion, some patients require minor oral surgical procedures before receiving their full or partial denture to ensure maximum level of comfort and a proper fit. If a tooth needs to be extracted, or the bone needs to be reshaped, oral surgery may be required to make the prosthesis fit correctly. A denture sits on the bone ridge, so it is very important that the bone is the proper shape and size. In some situations, excess bone may need to be removed prior to denture insertion.
If a tooth fails to erupt on the expected time line, an orthodontist will refer the patient to an oral surgeon for an "Expose-and-Bond" procedure.