Many people are born with a third set of molars most commonly referred to as wisdom teeth, and while Dr. Robert M. Walley certainly does his fair share of wisdom tooth removal, the truth is that not everybody has to have those teeth removed. For many patients, it is imperative for their overall dental health and hygiene to do so, while some people are born without them entirely.


The trick is knowing when these wisdom teeth should come out and when they should stay. While Dr. Walley can consult with patients and talk them through their options, those interested in knowing the ins and outs of wisdom tooth extraction can get a sense of whether or not they’ll require removal by looking for a few warning signs.


When to Get Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Put simply, if your wisdom teeth are impacted—if they are for one reason or another blocked from growing properly—it will be in your best interest to have them removed before they can cause any bigger problems in your mouth.


Your third molars are supposed to stand upright and erupt through your gums like all your other molars did as a kid, but if they are lying horizontally, it means there isn’t enough room for them to grow the way they should. If they creep sideways into a neighboring tooth, they can not only cause crowding and shifting, but they can accumulate plaque and bacteria more easily. Those cause cavities, which can lead to infections, all of which should be more than enough reason to consider removing them.

When to Leave Your Wisdom Teeth Alone

That said, some people have enough space in their mouth to allow upright wisdom teeth to erupt and sidle right in alongside existing teeth. If they aren’t shifting other teeth, if they have enough room to grow, and, most importantly, if they aren’t causing you any pain or discomfort, it is perfectly reasonable to leave your wisdom teeth in your mouth. They will ultimately function like any other molar.


That means the choice is up to you as to whether or not you’d like them removed. Sometimes, even wisdom teeth that erupt upright and function properly can develop problems over time. They are very far back in the mouth, which makes them the most difficult teeth to clean. If you do decide to keep your wisdom teeth, make sure you give them plenty of attention in terms of brushing and flossing.

Make an Appointment With an Experienced Dentist

Removing wisdom teeth does require oral surgery, but Dr. Walley is a respected wisdom tooth dentist with years of experience, so he can make the procedure as efficient and painless as possible. Keeping wisdom teeth when they should be extracted is much more painful than simply ridding yourself of the headache preemptively. As is the case with all such procedures, consult with Dr. Walley to make the best plan for your teeth. If that means removing those third molars, we can help, and if it means leaving them alone, we can at least provide you with the peace of mind in knowing you’re doing the right thing.


One of the worst things about getting braces is facing the reality of knowing just how many foods will be restricted for the entire time that those brackets are on your teeth. However, for decades, traditional metal braces were the only hope most people had for straightening out their teeth, and cutting out a few troublesome foods is a small price to pay when the tradeoff is a smile you love.


Then Invisalign came along and changed the way people with corrective orthodontics ate. Unlike with traditional braces, which makes it effectively impossible to eat anything that’s too hard or too chewy, Invisalign has zero food limitations.


It sounds simple, but there are a few things to remember when eating and drinking while using Invisalign. The following is a look at some of the most commonly-asked questions when it comes to eating with Invisalign.


Can I Eat With Invisalign Still In My Mouth?


While you can eat anything with Invisalign, you can’t eat anything while the Invisalign apparatus is in place. You should never eat with the Invisalign trays still in your mouth because doing so could stain and ultimately ruin them. If the point is to have straight, gorgeous teeth, eating with the Invisalign still in your mouth is counterproductive to that end.


Do I Have to Brush My Teeth Before Putting Aligners Back In?


To keep the aligners clean and working properly for the life of their use, it is important that you brush your teeth before putting them back into your mouth. It’s good hygienic practice to brush your teeth after every meal, but Dr. Robert Walley suggests brushing your teeth even after snacks. Failing to do so can mean getting foot trapped closely against your teeth, which can speed up tooth decay.


If you don’t have your toothbrush with you after a snack or meal on the go, at the very least rinse your mouth with water before putting the apparatus back into your mouth.


Can I Drink While Using Invisalign?


If what you’re drinking is water, then yes. You can drink with your aligners in. Otherwise, we do not recommend drinking without removing the apparatus from your mouth. Sugary drinks can cause plaque buildup, and hot drinks can cause the aligners to warp, effectively ruining them for their primary purpose. Certain drinks can discolor the trays, too, which will make your teeth look anything but white when they’re in your mouth.


If you are interested in consulting with your Union Square Invisalign dentist to see if it’s right for you, please don’t hesitate to set up an appointment at your convenience. Just know that, unlike braces, Invisalign allows you to eat whatever you want—as long as you do the eating with the trays outside of your mouth, and as long as you clean your teeth appropriately before sliding them back in.


There are many reasons why Invisalign is a great orthodontic option for people of all ages, but the ability to eat whatever you want is one that definitely separates it from traditional braces.


When you’re faced with dental damage or aesthetic problems, our San Francisco dentists will help you get back on track. Today we’re going to be giving you some more information on restoring your smile with state-of-the-art technologies.

When is restorative treatment necessary?

You may require restorative dental treatment for a number of different reasons, but there are a few key factors that prompt restorative care. It is crucial that you undergo treatment if the damage you’ve sustained will become more severe, or spread to other parts of the smile, over time. A cavity, for example, can move through the entire tooth structure, and even infect jaw and bone tissue. Obviously, you also want to seek treatment if you’re experiencing pain, and if the damage is unsightly.

What kinds of material does Dr. Walley use to treat damage?

Our team utilizes state-of-the-art materials to rebuild and repair teeth. Custom-shaded composite resin and tooth-colored fillings blend in seamlessly with the patient’s natural dental enamel. We also place porcelain, metal-free restorations, including same-day CEREC crowns to rebuild missing tooth structure. The materials we use are designed to look attractive and natural, while standing the test of time.

What about tooth replacement treatments?

The most transformative restorative treatments we provide are tooth replacement solutions. Individual dental implants are the state-of-the-art option available in dentistry today. These replacement teeth actually extend into the patient’s jawbone tissue, with a titanium root. Dental implants are permanent, oral-health-boosting replacement teeth that go far beyond what has historically been possible in dentistry. Excitingly, we can also permanently anchor larger dental prostheses, like dentures, into the patient’s smile using mini dental implant roots. When considering tooth replacement treatments for you, we’ll take into account your timeline, budget, oral health goals, and post-treatment maintenance preferences.

The sooner that you’re able to treat existing oral health problems, the better off you’ll be in the long-run. So give our San Francisco dentists a call to get started! 

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