Fairfax Medical Center
10721 Main Street, Suite 2200
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
Phone:(703) 352-3900

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the final teeth to develop. Most of us have four wisdom teeth, one in each corner of the mouth. They usually emerge during our late teens or early twenties.

Oftentimes, wisdom teeth become trapped, impacted, or fail to erupt in the jawbone and cause crowding, displacement, localized decay, infection or gum disease. Impacted wisdom teeth can grow in many different directions, horizontally, vertically, or at an angle.

Angular, bony impaction of third molar (wisdom tooth).

Soft Tissue

Soft tissue impaction of third molar (wisdom tooth).

In most cases, it is recommended that impacted wisdom teeth be extracted.

Wisdom tooth surgery is performed in Dr. Ortega's office, an outpatient surgical facility, or a hospital.


Incision is made and overlying bone is removed, exposing crown of impacted tooth.


Tooth is extracted whole or surgically sectioned. The site is sutured closed.

To ease any discomfort and promote healing:

Use ice packs on the cheek for swelling,
   alternating on and off every thirty
Apply biting pressure with clean gauze
   to stop bleeding.
Eat soft foods and drink extra liquids.
Avoid hard or crunchy foods in the
   tender area.
Brush carefully the day after surgery.
Take prescribed medications and follow
   all instructions as directed.

Call Dr. Ortega immediately in case of excessive bleeding or swelling, persistent, severe pain or fever.

Be sure to follow the special home care instructions provided by Dr. Ortega.

Dental Cosmetix
Cosmetic & Comprehensive Dentistry
10721 Main Street, Suite 2200
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
Phone: (703) 352-3900