What is a wisdom tooth removal / extraction?
The so called wisdom teeth usually grow out between the 16th and the 18th year of a patient’s life and can cause complications due to their late arrival (relative to the remaining permanent teeth). In some fortunate cases, wisdom teeth seamlessly integrate into a patient’s row of teeth...
The so called wisdom teeth usually grow out between the 16th and the 18th year of a patient’s life and can cause complications due to their late arrival (relative to the remaining permanent teeth). In some fortunate cases, wisdom teeth seamlessly integrate into a patient’s row of teeth and last for his or her entire life. However, should a patient’s jaw be too small to accommodate these additional teeth, an extraction most frequently becomes the only viable option.
At the start of the procedure the dentist performs an x-ray to determine the exact location of the wisdom teeth and their roots. Wisdom teeth with relatively straight roots that have already broken through the gum line can be removed fairly easily like any other tooth with only local anesthesia. Should a wisdom tooth, however, be partially stuck under the gum line or even completely stuck in the jaw bone, a surgical extraction (often under general anesthesia) can become necessary. Regardless of the applied extraction method, a wisdom tooth removal can encompass either a single tooth or all four of a patient’s wisdom teeth at once. After the extraction, the dentist cleans out the empty dental socket, fills it (if necessary) with synthetic bone matter, and sutures the wound. In particularly painful and complicated cases, the dentist also prescribes antibiotics and painkillers. Roughly one week after the surgery, the dentist removes the sutures and allows the subsequent wound healing to occur in a completely natural and barely noticeable way.
When do I need a wisdom tooth removal / extraction?
Most people need to have their wisdom teeth removed because these teeth often grow out of the gum line in a crooked direction or, in particularly unfortunate cases, get stuck in or under the gum line or even in the jaw bone (i.e., they get “impacted”) and, hence, elevate the risk of infections. In general, dentists recommend the removal of wisdom teeth in the following scenarios:
* Infections in the vicinity of wisdom teeth
* Onset of tooth decay (caries) on the wisdom teeth themselves
* Pain around one or more wisdom teeth
* Emergence of cysts around one or more wisdom teeth
Wisdom tooth extractions are routine procedures and are usually not associated with any problems – especially when their roots are not fully grown out yet. Therefore, the optimal age to get these teeth removed is between 16 and 20. Later in life, wisdom tooth removals become increasingly complicated and the healing process also takes significantly longer.
How much does a wisdom tooth removal / extraction cost?
The total cost of a wisdom tooth extraction depends directly on the duration of the procedure, its degree of difficulty, and the type of anesthesia used. Additional expenses for procedures performed prior to the extraction itself (e.g., x-rays, dental cleaning) also factor into the total cost. In general, state insurers pay for simple extractions under local anesthesia. The costs of more comprehensive forms of anesthesia are only covered by insurers in special cases (e.g., when local anesthesia cannot be used due to health reasons or when a patient suffers from significant anxiety). The exact amount paid by private insurers depends on their specific contract terms with individual patients (i.e., policy holders). With all of this said, there are still some orientation prices available that can provide helpful insight:
* Simple Extraction (local anesthesia): almost always covered by state insurance
* Extraction (anesthesia via laughing gas): € 100 – 200
* Extraction with additional Sedation (Sedation and local anesthesia): € 80 – 180 per hour
> Covered by state insurers under special circumstances (e.g., children, disabled persons)
* Extraction (general anesthesia): € 250 – 350 per hour
We hope that you found this primer helpful and invite you to take a look at our blog for more interesting and hopefully helpful information.