Wisdom Teeth Removal Fee Analysis

wisdom teeth fees

Wisdom Teeth: specialist fees 39% higher than general practitioners.

The Wealthy Dentist conducted a survey asking dentists and specialists what their fee is for removing wisdom teeth.

We found that specialist fees are 39% higher than general practitioners.

Some dentists cited the use of sedation as a reason for the increased cost.

“The fact that sedation is used gives patients the feeling that the higher cost at the oral surgeons is worth it!” pointed out a West Virginia dentist.

But others disagreed. “In my area the GP’s fees are generally higher than the specialists because we take longer to do it,” said one California dentist. Another Colorado dentist said, “Usually our fees are about the same as the oral surgeon.”

In this survey, here’s what dentist respondents revealed:

The average cost at a general practice – $483.00
The average cost at a specialist practice – $791.00

And here are some comments:

“If it’s easy like any old extraction, I use the regular extraction fee and the reg code. There’s no “wisdom teeth extraction” code. $575.00 is as high as I go to include flapping, osseous removal, bone graft (if needed) and sutures, poat op, etc…” (New York dentist)

“Our fee depends on if it’s impacted or not and how is it impacted: soft tissue, partial bony, or full bony.”(California dentist)

“It depends on what kind of third molars. Erupted? Soft tissue, partial or full impaction? It makes a difference on the fee charged. Also, if there is a cyst involved.” (Maryland oral surgeon)

“$239.00 is for erupted 3rds that need surgical extractions and $378.00 for horizontal impactions with unusual complications.” (General dentist)

For more on this survey see: Fees For Wisdom Teeth Removal.

Should Wisdom Teeth Decisions Involve a Specialist? (Video)

Dental practice marketing with internet videoImpacted wisdom teeth are a common dental problem.

While general dentists can do wisdom tooth extraction, oral surgeons may be better suited to handle complicated impactions.

“In our litigious society it is better to refer anything that can be done better by a specialist, including molar endo,” advised a New York dentist. “It is not worth the trouble, and the patients will love you for referring. You lose patients on whom you do extractions – spoken with 50 years’ experience.”

“I generally only extract impactions as an act of mercy to those who cannot afford an oral surgeon,” said a general dentist. “Anesthesia is the problem, not the removal.”

Jim Du Molin and Julie Frey reveal dentist survey results about impacted wisdom teeth:

A 57% majority of dentists in this survey say impacted teeth should usually — but not always — be removed.

Another 18% feel that they do not need to be automatically removed. Only 25% said impacted wisdom teeth should always be extracted.

Should GPs do the removal?

Three out of four of the doctors in this survey feel general dentists can handle most procedures, while 24% feel impacted wisdom teeth should be removed by specialists.

Like most procedures, GPs can remove most impactions with proper training. And like most procedures, experience, experience, experience is necessary to provide the patient with a safe, comfortable, predictable outcome,” said a West Virginia dentist.

“Any GP should know his or her clinical boundaries, whether it’s removing impacted wisdom teeth, correcting a bite, or any scope of dentistry. Oral surgeons usually do the procedure quicker and with less trauma to the patient. They are more expensive, though,” said a New York dentist. “If wisdom teeth are buried deep, fully erupted or not symptomatic in any way, they can stay, in my honest opinion.”

There’s lots of variations in wisdom teeth – and there are lots of variations in dentists’ opinions about them.

“Routine removal of wisdom teeth to prevent orthodontic relapse is an unsubstantiated strategy,” said a Vermont orthodontist.

“Advanced training after dental school is usually needed to do advanced impaction removal with the least amount of trauma to the patient, usually with IV sedation,” said an Alaska dentist.

Jim Du Molin added his opinion, from a patient’s point of view: “I definitely like a dentist who’s concerned with reducing the amount of trauma. I could have definitely done with a little less trauma when I got my wisdom teeth removed last year!”

Impacted Wisdom Teeth Should Always Be Removed, Says Dentist

Impacted Wisdom Teeth Should Always Be Removed, Says DentistAccording to the American Association for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, having wisdom teeth removed during the teenage years not only improves dental and oral health, but may also reduce the chance of illness later in life.

In the latest The Wealthy Dentist Survey on wisdom teeth removal, a Massachusetts dentist responded, “I am constantly amazed at how often I encounter problems due to wisdom teeth that were not extracted. These include periodontal and restorative issues which often compromise the second molar. And surgery in the 40 to 60-year-old is not the same as for a young patient.”

When asked if impacted wisdom teeth automatically should be removed, 60% of the dentists surveyed felt they should usually be removed, but not always. Many expressed concern that this is a skilled procedure where dentists need to have experience in the removal of wisdom teeth.

“The decision to remove wisdom teeth depends on the GP’s surgical experience, training and skill level,” advised one dentist.

21% of the dentist respondents believe impacted wisdom teeth need to always be removed, while 19% thought impacted wisdom teeth should not be removed.

But when asked if GPs can handle the removal of impacted wisdom teeth, 30% of the dentists acknowledged that general practitioners are generally not qualified to remove most impacted wisdom teeth cases. 51% believe GPS are more than qualified to removed impacted wisdom teeth, while 19% think GP’s can handle most cases.

“Any GP CAN be qualified to remove any impacted wisdom teeth through training and experience. The question of sedation techniques should be brought into the qualification considerations for the positive experience of the patient,” one dentist wrote.

Many doctors wrote that the ability of a GP to remove impacted wisdom teeth involves a combination of sedation expertise, formal training and a dentist’s experience.

Here are some dentist comments from the survey:

“It depends on the GP’s experience and comfort level. I am a GP and have extracted over 20,000 impacted wisdom teeth in my 30 year career so far. There really no impactions that I come across that I don’t feel qualified to tackle. That being said, if I see teeth that are close to the IAN that are potential parasthesia risks, I will recommend a cone beam scan (which I have in my office) to properly inform the patient of surgical risks, and if the risks are too high, will recommend not extracting those teeth if they do not absolutely need to be removed due to other complications. Many GP’s like myself, do implants, sinus lifts, advanced bone grafting and other advanced surgical procedures, so impactions are no big deal to those with those skills and experience.” (Alabama dentist)

“If you have any doubt of your capability to handle that specific extraction DON’T DO IT!” (Texas dentist)

“Qualification to remove wisdom teeth is determined by training and experience as well as desire to perform the procedure.” (Nevada dentist)

“I would much rather remove impacted teeth when a person is young and when there are no cysts or other pathology involved. They may never become symptomatic, but when they do, it is a very serious problem requiring more extensive surgery than the simpler surgical extraction that can be done at a young, healthy age. GP’s can get the training necessary to remove any impacted wisdom teeth, but that is not usually included in a regular dental school curriculum.” (Texas dentist)

“Each case needs to be evaluated on merit, looking at long term benefit and potential risk, both of the teeth remaining and the surgical procedure.” (General dentist)

“The decision to remove third molars must take many factors into consideration. A complete evaluation of tooth position, age of patient, root development, apical configuration, space consideration, local periodontal health, and medical history is essential. This will allow both the doctor and the patient to weigh the “benefits to risks” of removing wisdom teeth in each specific situation. Not every third molar should be removed, but it is essential in practicing good preventive dentistry to know the status of wisdom teeth, presence of pathology, and make a conscientious decision as to whether it best to remove or retain them.” (Utah oral surgeon)

“Sure, I think GPs are qualified, but I think an honest self-appraisal should guide whether it is worth it for the patient and GP. Never mind the money!” (Minnesota dentist)

“Stop Obamacare from indirectly letting non-dentist, ‘oral clinicians’ (such as in Alaska) extract teeth! This is a travesty!” (General dentist)

174 dentists participated in this survey from across the U.S. suburban dentists lead the survey in their willingness to perform impacted wisdom teeth removals.

How do you handle impacted wisdom teeth cases? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

All Impacted Wisdom Teeth Can Be Removed By Dentists, Survey Reveals

All Impacted Wisdom Teeth Can Be Removed By Dentists Survey Reveals18% of dentists feel impacted wisdom teeth do not need to be removed, but if they do, 76% feel GPs are qualified to remove most impacted wisdom teeth.

One dentist stated, “All dentists are qualified to pull teeth.”

The Wealthy Dentist conducted a survey asking dentists if impacted wisdom teeth automatically be removed and if GPs should do the removal.

In this survey, here’s what dentist respondents revealed:

Impacted wisdom teeth should automatically be removed: 25% yes definitely, 57% usually but not always, and 18% no.

GP’s handing the removal: 76% feel they can handle most procedures, while 24% felt dentists are not qualified to remove impacted wisdom teeth.

Many dentists felt GP’s should be able to perform any dental procedure they are trained for and feel comfortable handling.

Here’s what else dentists had to say about removing impacted wisdom teeth —

“It depends upon the individual’s skill and comfort level as to if they should remove impacted teeth or any other surgical procedures for that matter.” (Illinois dentist)

“Each situation needs an individual ‘wait-and-see’ decision, Some look bad early and turn and erupt into place. Others turn for the worst and become impacted and need to be removed. Many are OK over time.” (Massachusetts orthodontist)

“All dentists know or should know their interests and experience. Extracting complicated teeth can be learned through incremental experience and continued education, just like any other complicated dental discipline. Learning does not stop with the presentation of a dental license.” (Canadian dentist)

“I generally only extract impactions as an act of mercy to those who cannot afford an oral surgeon. Anesthesia is the problem, not the removal.” (General dentist)

“Like most procedures, GPs can remove most impactions with proper training.. And like most procedures, experience, experience, experience is necessary to provide the patient with a safe, comfortable, predictable outcome.” (West Virgina dentist)

“Advanced training after dental school is usually needed to do advanced impaction removal with the least amount of trauma to the patient. Usually with IV sedation.” (Alaska dentist)

“Most general dentists do not have additional instruments needed should a complication or unexpected difficulty arises. Also, specifically with impacted teeth, unless the dentist has advanced his/her training beyond dental school and routinely does these procedures an a daily basis, they place their patient at increased risk for both complication and increased morbidity.” (Florida oral surgeon)

“It all depends on the general practitioner’s experience and comfort level of what he feels qualified to do.” (Arizona dentist)

“In our litigious society it is better to refer anything that can be done better by a specialist, including molar endocrinologist. It is not worth the trouble and the patient’s will love you for referring. You lose patients on whom you do extractions – spoken with 50 years experience.” (New York dentist)

“If third molars lack space to erupt into functional and maintainable positions they should be given STRONG consideration for removal! See the AAOMS White Paper regarding Third Molars – it is excellent evidence-based information.” (Pennsylvania oral surgeon)

“It takes extra training to remove most even slightly impacted wisdom teeth. GP’s are certainly qualified to get that extra training in order to remove them without complications.” (Texas dentist)

“In some cases I will consult the treating orthodontist to see if he/she feels there is enough room for the wisdom teeth to erupt without any damaging effect to the completed orthodontic case.” (Illinois dentist)

“Any GP should know his/her clinical boundaries whether it’s removing impacted wisdom teeth, correcting a bite, or any scope of dentistry. OS’s usually do the procedure quicker and at less trauma to the patient. They are more expensive though. If wisdom teeth are buried deep, fully erupted or not symptomatic in any way, they can stay in my honest opinion.” (New York dentist)

“The current practice of waiting for complete development and then surgically removing with a 6% chance of parasthesia and other morbidity is ludicrous. The early minimally invasive of the developing tooth prior to calcification can be done in 2 minutes with almost no risk. Between 8-11 years of age the (mandibular) bud is at the crest of the ridge and is very easily accessed prior to 2nd molar eruption. The tooth bud can be saved for the highest quality stem cells available that have been shown to be multi-potent.” (Illinois dentist)

 (Louisiana dentist)

What are your thoughts on the removal of impacted wisdom teeth?  Are dentists qualified to remove impacted wisdom teeth?

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