Surgery may be defined as that branch of medicine which treats diseases, wholly
or in part by manual and operative procedures.

Oral surgery then is that branch of surgery and dentistry which deals with diseases
and injuries of the  mouth, teeth, and adjacent tissues.

Oral surgery is any prodedure that your dentist performs that involves cutting into,
or removing tissue or teeth from your mouth. It can include procedures like tooth
extractions, gum tissue surgery, implant procedures and others.

On top of that, oral surgery can also include removing diseased tissue from the mouth ,
correcting jaw mal-alignments and cleft palate abnormalities.

Generally speaking, teeth should NEVER have to be extracted and the great preponderance
of extractions in the 50’s and 60’s was not only un-necessary, but WRONG !

Contemporary standards of dental treatment would indicate that such routine extractions,
being unnecessary and wrong actually constitute malpractice.

The extraction of one tooth can have a crippling effect on the dentition. The public has
long believed that two major, valid reasons for extractions are infections (abscessed teeth)
and pain resulting from a tooth-ache.

Yet pain and infections were not always indications for extractions either then or now
in the early 21st century.

In most cases,both infection and pain associated with the teeth can be treated successfully,
thereby eliminating the need for extractions!

For example, pulpal (nerve) infections of the teeth can be treated with root canal therapy.
Periodontal (gum) tissue infections , except for the hopeless cases, can be treated with
scaling, root-planing and periodontal surgery .

In dentistry , PAIN can be be treated by removing the cause (be it carious cavities,
a pulpitis (nerve infection ) with the added use of antibiotics and analgesics (pain relievers)
when applicable, ……………not by extractions.

There are legitimate reasons for some extractions to take place even when the teeth have
healthy, strong roots and are not diseased.

Consequently, if a dentist recommends the removal of such teeth, it should not imply that
the dentist is recommending a procedure that is inappropriate or improper.

The so-called wisdom teeth or third molars  for example are the classic exception to the
rule that most teeth should never have to be extracted.

In most people, the wisdom teeth simply do not have enough room to erupt  and grown into
the oral cavity to be functional and useful.

These teeth are often referred to as malposed or impacted in some form or another . These
malposed teeth may be classified as a horizontal impaction, vertical impaction, complete
bony impaction, partial bony impaction , soft tissue impaction and  several variations of

More often and not, there is usually pain associated with the eruption of the wisdom teeth 
particularly in the lower jaw. Sometimes there is an infection present. sometimes the adjacent
second molar tooth may be damaged or in danger of being damaged or compromised.

Wisdom teeth, when malposed and or impacted usually can and will cause problems thus making
it necessary to remove them  when they become problematic.

From my experience over many years , I would not recommend the removal of impacted wisdom teeth
if they are not a issue or have some potential of causing a serious problem for you. …………..
…….If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it !

My next blog will deal with other other types of teeth that may have to be removed for
more specific reasons.

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