Wisdom Tooth Extraction
The average adult has thirty-two teeth by age eighteen, sixteen teeth on the top and sixteen teeth on the bottom. Each tooth in the mouth has a specific design and function. The teeth in the front of the mouth (incisors, canine and bicuspid teeth) are ideal for grasping and biting food into smaller pieces while the back, or molar teeth, are used to grind food into a consistency suitable for swallowing.
The average mouth, however, is only large enough to hold 28 teeth. It can be painful when 32 teeth try to fit in a mouth that has room for only 28 teeth. The third molars, or wisdom teeth, are the last to form. Since there is not enough space for these teeth, they will often cause pressure and pain when they begin to erupt. Unfortunately, the only way to treat the lack of space in the mouth for these teeth, is to remove them.
Normally, all four wisdom teeth are removed at the same time to avoid multiple visits for removal of each of the teeth. Often the procedure is done under general anesthesia, where the patient is asleep.