As we all approach the early years of adulthood, our third set of molars—commonly referred to as wisdom teeth—begin to emerge.
Unfortunately, though, a majority of American’s mouths are simply too small to accommodate four new teeth. They become impacted and we’re required to have our wisdom teeth removed. Yet, how much does wisdom teeth removal cost?
The total cost of wisdom teeth removal will depend on your dental insurance plan. Without insurance, you can expect to pay several thousand dollars to have teeth surgically extracted. There are, however, a few ways you can save money and still receive the dental care you need.
Let’s take a closer look at why you would need wisdom teeth removal surgery and how much you should prepare to spend.
Why Get A Wisdom Teeth Removal?
According to the American Dental Association, around 10 million Americans have a wisdom tooth extraction done every year. This makes it one of the most common types of tooth extractions as well as one of the most common forms of dental surgery.
So why are so many people paying the cost of an extraction?
Your wisdom teeth will usually start growing around your late teen years. If your mouth isn’t large enough or they don’t grow properly, though, they won’t erupt through your gums and can cause severe dental issues:
- Chronic tooth pain
- Tooth infection
- Nerve damage
- Migrating teeth
- Gum disease and infection
- Inflammation of gum tissue (Pericoronitis)
Therefore, most oral surgeons prefer to remove the wisdom teeth before eruption. If you’ve recently been experiencing pain in the back corners of your mouth, have your surgeon take an x-ray and evaluate if you need to have a wisdom tooth extraction.
The Total Cost Of A Wisdom Tooth Removal
If your oral surgeon agrees that it’s time to have a wisdom teeth extraction, you’re probably wondering about the wisdom teeth removal cost. While we understand that you would like a simple round number, it’s difficult to state a single flat fee. Your total healthcare costs will depend a lot on your dentist and insurance coverage.
Top insurance plans should cover the majority of your dental fees. At most, you may be required to pay a small deductible. If you do not have insurance, prepare to spend quite a lot more.
Types Of Wisdom Tooth Removal
The less invasive the procedures, the less expensive they will be. Depending on how bad your condition is, your dentist will recommend one of these three extractions:
Also known as pulling a tooth, your dentist should be qualified to do a simple extraction in one sitting.
Soft Tissue Impaction
The tooth is blocked by gum tissue and cannot break through the surface. You will require oral surgery and a local anesthetic.
The tooth is stuck inside the jawbone and cannot grow out. You will require oral surgery and anesthesia sedation.
Both oral surgery and anesthesia will increase the overall wisdom teeth removal cost.
Paying Without Insurance
If you are currently unenrolled in dental insurance or lack coverage through an employee benefits package, expect to pay out of pocket. The average cost of these procedures in the state of California ranges from:
- Simple extraction – $75-$100 per tooth (~$300-$400 in total)
- Soft tissue impaction – Around $400 per tooth (~$1,600 in total)
- Bony impaction – Around $1,000 per tooth (~$4,000 in total)
These costs don’t include anesthesia. If you require local or general anesthesia sedation, expect to pay even more. Fortunately, Benicia Oral Surgery—located in Benicia, CA—is an insurance-friendly dentist office that accepts policies from insurance companies such as Cigna, Denti-Cal, Medicare, CCPOA, Aetna, Delta Dental, and many more.
What If You Cannot Afford To Pay Without Insurance?
If you’re worried that you won’t be able to pay for surgery without insurance, you’re not out of luck just yet. You can still undergo the extraction process without having to pay the wisdom teeth removal cost by expanding your search:
Speak with your dentist about setting up a payment plan. Dentists know that not everyone has insurance or can cover the wisdom teeth removal cost. Your dentist may be able to help you out by putting you on a payment plan.
Dentists in training gain experience by working on real teeth. If you live near a dental school, you can have the procedure done cheaply by a resident who is observed by a professional. It’s safe and one of the least expensive options.
Alternatively, you can visit a government-funded clinic. The government pays dentists working at these clinics to meet the needs of less fortunate Americans. If you qualify, you may be able to have the procedure done completely free of cost.
Wisdom teeth extraction costs vary greatly depending on whether you need surgery, your dentist, and your insurance company. If you have a top plan, you may be able to escape without paying more than a small deductible.
If you don’t have insurance, you could be stuck paying thousands of dollars. Call us today and speak with our dentists at Benicia Oral Surgery and let us know how we can meet your needs.