Wisdom Teeth Removal

Worried About Your Wisdom Teeth?

Our gentle and experienced Calgary dentist is here to help.

Are you experiencing discomfort or swelling in the area of your wisdom teeth? Do you have pain in your jaw, ear or gums? Do you find it difficult to brush and floss around your wisdom teeth? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, you may need your wisdom teeth removed.

Our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, has over 28 years of experience in wisdom teeth removal. Our dental clinic located in the heart of Kensington in NW Calgary also offers both IV sedation and oral sedation for those experiencing dental anxiety related to wisdom teeth removal or any other dental procedure.

Call us to discuss your wisdom teeth concerns today. 

Our Calgary Dentist Has Over 28 Years' Experience in Wisdom Teeth Removal.

Why Have Your Wisdom Teeth Removed By Our Calgary Dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson?

The third molars at the back of the mouth are known as your wisdom teeth. These teeth generally emerge between the ages of 17 and 25. If your wisdom teeth emerge with no difficulties and line up naturally with your adjacent teeth, there is generally no reason to remove these teeth. When problems due to wisdom teeth emerge, however, extraction is generally recommended.

Wisdom teeth can cause the following potential issues:

cavities caused by the inability to clean properly around the area of your wisdom teeth

crowding or damage to adjacent teeth due to lack of space

partial eruption of wisdom teeth (see illustration)

poor positioning of wisdom teeth (see illustration)

gum disease or inflammation caused by the inability to properly clean around the area of your wisdom teeth

wisdom teeth

pain in in your jaw or gums where the wisdom tooth is impacted or partially impacted or pain in your ear on the side of the wisdom tooth in question

redness or swelling where the wisdom tooth is impacted or partially impacted

decay caused by wisdom tooth crowding and the inability to properly clean around the area of the wisdom tooth and its adjacent tooth

crowding or damage to adjacent teeth

gum disease or infection caused by the inability to properly clean around the area of the partially or fully erupted wisdom tooth

Other Reasons For Dental Extractions

Wherever possible, our Calgary dentist recommends that you try to save your tooth. Unfortunately, in some instances, this is not possible and extraction of your tooth is the best and/or only solution.

Understandably, for many patients, being told that a tooth extraction is recommended can cause some anxiety. Having as much information as possible can help to relieve this anxiety and provide the reassurance you need. At your dental appointment, our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, will ensure that you are advised of all available alternative options to a tooth extraction, the likelihood of success of such treatments and finally the reason an extraction is being offered as a viable option.

Our Calgary dentist always encourages you to ask as many questions as you may need in order to ensure that you make an informed decision about this irreversible procedure and all of the benefits and risks of each type of potential treatment.


extensive decay

If your tooth has extensive decay, there may not be sufficient healthy tooth structure remaining to support any kind of restoration such as a crown or a filling.

tooth trauma

If a tooth has experienced significant trauma, the tooth may no longer be viable and extraction of the tooth may be the only feasible option.

preparation for orthodontics

Where there is significant teeth crowding, extraction of one or more teeth may be recommended prior to the commencement of orthodontic treatment.

preparation for dentures

If you have have chosen to proceed with either upper or lower dentures, extraction of any remaining teeth will be necessary to accommodate the upper or lower denture.


dental crown

It may be possible to save a tooth with a dental crown if there is sufficient tooth structure on which to place the crown. A root canal may or may not be required in this case.

large restoration (filling)

Although a large restoration is generally a less favourable option over a dental crown as a dental crown is stronger and will last longer, it may be possible to restore a tooth with a filling if sufficient tooth structure remains on which to place this type of restoration. A root canal may or may not be required in this case.

root canal treatment

Where a root canal will allow your tooth to be saved, this will be our Calgary dentist's recommended course of action. In this case, the preferred restoration will be a dental crown.


Replacement Options

Prior to your tooth extraction, our Calgary dentist will discuss with you all available options to replace your extracted tooth or teeth. At this time, our Calgary dentist’s recommendations regarding the necessity of a bone graft will also be discussed. Recommended options for tooth replacement depend upon a variety of factors including how many teeth were extracted, the location of the extracted tooth or teeth, the number and position of your remaining teeth, your oral health goals and, of course, your budget. 

Dental Implants

Dental implants are considered to be the best replacement for one or more extracted teeth. Once the dental implant is placed and completed with a restoration, it feels and functions just like a natural tooth and, with proper care, can last a lifetime.


Fixed Bridge or Implant Retained Bridge

A bridge or an implant retained bridge is an option where the missing tooth or teeth either have healthy teeth on both sides or where the bridge can be retained by two implants. 

Denture or Implant Retained Denture

An upper or lower denture, a partial denture or an implant retained denture are options where one or more teeth have been extracted. When not implant retained, a conventional denture or partial denture is a more economical than a fixed bridge.

For more information about our dental implant options, see our dental implant page.



We Have Answers
Find out more about some of our most frequently asked questions of our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, about wisdom teeth removal and other dental extractions.

Generally, you can expect it to take between 7 and 10 days for the extraction site of your wisdom or other tooth to heal. This time period, however, depends upon a variety of factors including the complexity of the extraction, your overall health, your overall oral health and how diligent you are in following post-operative instructions. 

For the first 24 hours following your wisdom tooth extraction by our Calgary dentist, you may experience some minor bleeding and swelling. Part of the healing process includes the formation of a blood clot at the extraction site. Because the formation of a blood clot is crucial in the healing process, it’s important to avoid any activities that may potentially dislodge or disrupt the blood clot including rinsing forcefully, eating hard foods, using a straw or smoking.

After a dental extraction, most patients are able to manage any associated pain or discomfort with over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen (eg Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). In the event of a complicated extraction, our Calgary dentist may prescribe you a pain medication and/or a stronger anti-inflammatory medication.

In the event you experience any prolonged or severe pain, swelling or bleeding or have a fever or any other concerning symptoms, it’s important that you call our Calgary dentist office as soon as possible, or if after our regular business hours, to call Dr. Dirk Thompson at the emergency cell phone number provided to you after your dental extraction.


A dry socket can occur as a result of the loss of the blood clot in the socket where your tooth was extracted. This usually happens in the second to fourth day following your extraction.  This is usually quite a painful condition with symptoms appearing as pain in the extraction site, as well as pain in adjacent teeth, in your jaw and even radiating to your ear and chin. Although not everyone experiences this painful condition, its cause can be attributed to a variety of factors including being older in age, a difficult surgery, the use of tobacco products or just simple inadvertant dislogement of the blood clot when eating.

As a dry socket can cause the healing at the tooth extraction site to be delayed and can be quite painful, if you think you are experiencing a dry socket after a tooth extraction, call our Calgary dentist office as soon as possible.

Yes, of course! Asking our Calgary dentist for a pre-determination of your proposed dental work can be a very useful tool in planning for your dental treatment. 

A dental insurance pre-determination is a request to your dental insurer prior to treatment to confirm the amount of existing insurance coverage for the proposed dental treatment. Often our Calgary dentist can make this request of your dental insurer on the day of your visit, with the response being communicated through our computer system, or if that is not possible with your plan, a phone call. If the dental treatment involves major dental work such as crowns, veneers, bridges, sedation dentistry, dental implants or other extensive dental treatment, a request for a pre-determination must be made several weeks in advance of your appointment date to allow your dental insurer time to review x-rays and assess your potential claim.  

Although most patients tolerate an extraction procedure quite well with only the use of a local anaesthetic, some patients prefer to have their tooth extracted while being sedated. Our Calgary dentist offers both oral sedation and IV sedation. For more information about both oral sedation and IV sedation at our Calgary dentist office, please refer to our sedation dentistry information page as well as our oral sedation and IV sedation pages on our website.

No, a wisdom tooth extraction should not be painful. Prior to your wisdom tooth extraction, our Calgary dentist will administer a local anaesthetic in the area of the concerning tooth. The local anaesthetic will work to “freeze” the area of the extraction so that you should not feel any pain at all, although you may feel pressure while the tooth is being extracted.

Following your wisdom tooth extraction, you may experience some discomfort after the effects of the local anaesthetic have worn off. Most patients are able to manage this discomfort quite well with over-the-counter medications. If necessary, particularly with a complicated extraction, our Calgary dentist may prescribe you a pain medication.

Dental insurance plans vary widely amongst dental insurance providers as does the type and amount of dental insurance coverage available to patient. Whether your dental insurance plan will cover your wisdom tooth extraction or other teeth extraction will depend upon the terms of your insurance and whether you have reached your annual maximum benefit coverage, if you have one. 

The best way to know whether and to what extent your dental insurance will cover your wisdom or other teeth removal is to ask us to submit a pre-determination to your dental insurer. To do, please complete the form below or call our Calgary dentist office.

We’re here to help make your dental experience with us as efficient and comfortable as possible.

love your smile

Our Calgary dentist is always happy to request a pre-determination of your dental benefits on your behalf. If you are considering dental treatment but are wondering what your insurer benefits will cover, please call our Calgary dentist office or submit your request for our office to request a pre-determination of benefits on your behalf below.

- Want to know more about our general dentistry services?

Our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, provides comprehensive general dentistry services to patients of all ages at our beautiful and comfortable clinic in NW Calgary. Find out more below.

Things To Think About

Extractions Are Forever

Prioritize your dental health

Prioritizing your dental health can help to avoid the necessity of a tooth extraction. Ensure you follow a consistent home oral care routine, eat a healthy diet, avoid trauma to your teeth by wearing a sports guard and see our Calgary dentist twice per year or as recommended for dental examinations and cleanings.

After Your Extraction

follow post-operative instructions

In order for the healing process after a tooth extraction to be as comfortable and complication free as possible, diligent and proper post-operative care is imperative. After your dental extraction, our Calgary dentist will provide you with instructions on how to keep your surgical site clean and healthy to reduce the risk of  complications. 

Replacement Options

sooner is better than later

The best course of action after a dental extraction is to replace your missing tooth or teeth with a dental prosthetic such as a dental implant, denture, partial denture or bridge as soon as possible. Without a dental prosthetic replacement, you may experience bone loss and movement of your remaining teeth causing them to be misaligned.



All information contained in this Calgary dentist website is for informational purposes only. It is not to be taken or used as a substitute for dental, medical or other professional advice, treatment or diagnosis. Always ask your dentist, physician or other healthcare professional for advice before making any decisions regarding or altering your oral or regular health care routine.

Reliance on any information provided in this Calgary dental website is solely at the user’s own risk. Dr. Dirk A. Thompson, D.D.S., Dirk A. Thompson Professional Corporation, Advance Your Health Dental and its employees (“DTPC”) make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability, or availability of the information contained on the website or the related graphics, products, services, or other materials for any purpose. 

In no event will DTPC be liable for any loss or damage, including but not limited to indirect or consequential loss or damage, arising from the use of this website or any information, products, services, or materials offered through this dental website.

Through this website, you may be able to link to other websites that are not under the control of DTPC. DTPC has no control over the nature, content, and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links to outside websites is not and does not imply a recommendation or endorsement of the views expressed within them.