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Wisdom teeth typically emerge between the late teenage years and early adult years. However, 60 percent of people undergo wisdom teeth removal surgery. Both oral surgeons and general dentists are qualified to remove wisdom teeth.
In most cases, wisdom teeth are removed before they erupt. Extraction is usually necessary because there is not enough room in the mouth for them to erupt correctly. The improper eruption of a third molar can lead to an infection or an impacted tooth.
Forty percent of people have all four wisdom teeth. Twenty-five percent of people are born with one to three wisdom teeth.
Risks associated with wisdom teeth removal surgery include:
Even if all four wisdom teeth show no signs of infection, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon (OMS) will recommend extracting them. If only one wisdom tooth is painful or infected, all four teeth will likely require extraction anyways. Patients always have the choice to keep their wisdom teeth if they so choose.
The average cost of wisdom teeth removal is expensive without insurance. This is especially true if you are paying out-of-pocket.
The average total cost of wisdom teeth removal without insurance ranges from:
Some oral surgeons offer discounts for removing all four wisdom teeth at once. You can save $1,000 or more on wisdom teeth extractions.
Before surgery, your dentist will check for signs of gum disease and take a panoramic x-ray or CBCT image. General anesthesia and IV sedation (twilight sedation) is available for those who wish to be sedated for the surgery. These medications reduce anxiety and put you to sleep for the duration of surgery. Dentists often provide “package discounts” on these services if you are getting all four wisdom teeth removed.
Insurance coverage for wisdom teeth removal depends on your dental insurance plan. Most insurance companies cover 80 percent of wisdom tooth extraction costs.
Although this is a great option, most dental insurance plans have annual limits on how much they payout for all dental care (typically around $1500). Many people split the procedure into two years to get more coverage.
Discount dental plans could save you more than insurance.
Dental insurance can be costly. There are other affordable ways to get your wisdom teeth removed without insurance.
A payment plan is another way to save money on wisdom teeth removal if you do not have insurance. Some oral surgeons and general dentists may allow you to pay off a portion of the surgery over a few months. You would pay your dentist or surgeon directly instead of using insurance.
Discount dental plans are an excellent way to save money on wisdom teeth removal. There are several discount dental plans available. All of them have similar benefits:
Careington is a popular dental discount option that provides 20 to 50 percent savings on dental care costs. Unlike insurance, there is no annual spending limit on dental work. Patients pay one low yearly fee and can use their Careington plan to save on treatments all year.
Save 10-60% on dental care with a Dental Savings Plan at DentalPlans.com
“Careington Dental Savings Plans: 20-50% Dental Discounts.” Careington, www.careingtondentalsavings.com/.
Hollins, Carole. Basic Guide to Dental Procedures. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2015.
Individual CIGNA Dental Choice. https://www.cigna.com/assets/docs/texas/844097_Dental_Choice.pdf
Koerner, Karl R. Manual of Minor Oral Surgery for the General Dentist. Blackwell Munksgaard, 2006.