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Are extractions necessary in order to straighten your teeth?

November 2, 2021

This is a question that many of my patients have asked for years. “Why do I need to extract teeth?” or “Are extractions necessary?”

The answer is maybe.

All straight teeth and treatment objectives are not the same. Some people like a full smile/face/profile. Some people like a flatter smile/face/profile. In order to place teeth in the position that will make you happiest, sometimes teeth need to be removed. Most humans are born with 32 teeth. Traditionally, it has been the norm for people to get their wisdom teeth out when they become adults leaving them with 28 teeth. I have 28 teeth.

Instead of removing wisdom teeth, sometimes it is a better strategy to remove other teeth instead (still leaving you with 28 teeth). This accomplishes 2 goals. Giving room for potentially impacted wisdom teeth and giving room to place the other teeth in proper orientation that will provide the esthetically pleasing smile that you want.

In our office, we don’t extract teeth very often, only when absolutely necessary. However, when extractions are necessary, consider removing other teeth rather than wisdom teeth and still keeping 28 teeth.

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