DIFFERENT METHODS FOR THIRD MOLAR REMOVAL
I have been practicing for over 30 years and have had the privilege of removing wisdom teeth on thousands of patients. I have been fortunate that I have never had an incidence of a permanent nerve injury in the under 20 age group. We also have very rarely had a problem with nerve injury in the older populations. (J Oral Maxillofac Surg 76; 503.e1-503.e8, 2018).
I attribute the results to proper, careful technique and maybe some skill and/or luck, but I know for sure the risks for me are closer to zero the younger the patient is – age 15 is about ideal as most people at that age have third molars that are just beyond the crown stage of development. This means that the teeth have little root structure – so little risks to the adjacent structures such as the teeth, nerves, or sinuses.
The stated article is proposing a special technique for removing the third molars. I welcome these new ideas, but I have yet to see a safer, effective method with excellent outcomes. Our technique at the time of this writing gives these best results. Most of the new techniques that have been put forward in the past 10 years have been designed to circumvent the treatment or simplify it to try to save money. In order to make progress, scientifically, it is important to keep trying these new ideas – however it is clear to me that there have been no alternatives presented that take proper care of our patients’ best oral health interests.
The bottom line is that the techniques that we use in our office are the techniques that are practiced by most oral and maxillofacial surgeons here in the USA, and along with the care paradigm of early preventive removal of third molar teeth, is still the best treatment.
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