What to Expect From A Wisdom Teeth Removal Procedure
Your wisdom teeth are the final set of molars to come through in your late teens or early twenties. Sometimes they come through later in life or not at all. And, this can cause all sorts of problems.
These teeth have no real reason for being there and can wreak havoc on your body if there are problems. When looking for wisdom teeth removal around Melbourne, look for a dentist who knows what they are doing. Not all dentists have experience with wisdom teeth removal.
Many dentists recommend removing wisdom teeth even before they can cause problems. You may not take this advice if your wisdom teeth are not giving you any trouble. This may be a mistake if they cause problems as you get older.
Why remove wisdom teeth
Wisdom usually push through your gums between the ages of 17 and 25, and sometimes not at all.
While we have 32 teeth, the jaw can be too small to fit them all in. Some people only have room for 28 teeth. When this occurs, there is not enough room for the four wisdom teeth to come through properly. They can grow in at an angle or get trapped instead of fully emerging. This causes all sort of problems and pain and can damage other teeth and your jaw bone.
Dentists often recommend removing wisdom teeth for the following reasons:
- There is not enough room. When there is not enough room in your mouth for your molars, your dentist will recommend their removal.
- Grow in crookedly. Your wisdom teeth may grow in crookedly and push against other teeth and can damage them.
- When teeth are impacted. Wisdom teeth need removing if they are impacted. This happens when the tooth becomes trapped before they fully emerge, which will cause a lot of pain. Sometimes all a dentist needs to do is make a small cut in the gum to allow the tooth to grow through into your mouth.
- Rotten and decaying. It is difficult to clean wisdom teeth properly, which can cause them to rot and decay.
Leaving them in can make it more difficult to clean your teeth and you can develop gum disease. To avoid all this, the dentist will recommend wisdom teeth removal.
Over the years the dentist will keep a close eye on your wisdom teeth. They will do an oral exam and x-rays of your mouth to look at your wisdom teeth and their alignment. Your dentist can do this even before your wisdom teeth come through to see if there is enough room for them to grow into your mouth. Where there is no crowding or problems, the wisdom teeth may settle in place with no problems.
When you are already experiencing problems, or if the dentist thinks these will cause future problems, they will recommend removing them. Depending on a dentist’s experience, they will either remove the wisdom teeth themselves or send you to an oral surgeon.
Removing wisdom teeth is a painless procedure. Sitting in the dental chair, you will receive a numbing agent in the area. This can be a local anaesthetic where you are still awake and feel the pressure of the tooth being pulled. But you will not feel any pain. Or you can have a general anaesthetic. This will completely knock you out and you will not feel a thing. By the time you wake up the procedure is over, and the healing begins.
The type of numbing agent used depends on how difficult the dentist thinks the procedure will be. It also depends on how you feel about having your teeth out. Many people cannot cope with having their wisdom teeth removed. But if the extraction is particularly complicated, ask for a referral to an oral surgeon. An oral surgeon will do the procedure in a hospital under general anaesthetic.
When having them removed in a dental surgery you receive the numbing agent and left for it to take effect. Once the area is numb and you cannot feel pain, the dentist will use a special instrument to disconnect and loosen the gum tissue from around the tooth. When the tooth is out, you may have stitches if required. The dentist will cover the wound site with gauze to help the blood to clot.
Recovering from wisdom tooth extraction
Recovering from wisdom teeth extraction can either be relatively painless or very, very painful. When the procedure is over, you need to take some time out to heal. Keep in mind that your face will swell up and stay swollen for a couple days.
How people respond to wisdom teeth extraction afterwards is different for everyone. It depends on whether you only had one wisdom tooth removed or all four removed at once. Your mouth and gums will be sore for up to a week, but any pain in the area should start subsiding after a few days.
Your dentist may suggest you take over-the-counter medications to help reduce the pain. You can also use an ice pack to help with the swelling and pain.
You will receive after care instructions from the dentist and it is important you follow these to avoid a dry socket. For the first 24 hours you should only eat soft foods like soups and scrambled eggs. Do not drink through a straw as this can dislodge the blood clot over the wound. Start eating more solid foods over the next few days.
Use warm salt water to keep the wound clean to avoid infection. But make sure you just gently swirl the salt water in your mouth to rinse after eating and before bed. You do not want to dislodge the clot on the wound with vigorous rinsing.
Avoid dry socket during recovery
Dry socket is a painful condition that can develop after a tooth extraction. It occurs when the blood clot over the extraction site dislodges to expose the bone and nerves. This is not something you want to experience. It is very painful and delays recovery. You will get after care instructions when you leave the dentist. These tell you how to look after yourself while recovering. Make sure you follow your dentist’s advice after having wisdom teeth extracted so you do not develop a dry socket.
Who is at risk of developing dry socket
Some people are more susceptible to dry socket than others after an extraction. This includes people:
- With poor dental hygiene
- Who smoke
- Who had a difficult tooth extraction
- Who have a history of dry socket
- Using birth control pills.
Also, avoid drinking through a straw or spitting out excess saliva. The pressure from this can dislodge the blood clot, making the risk of developing dry socket higher.
Dry socket symptoms
What are dry socket symptoms? Look into a mirror and open your mouth. When you look into your mouth at the wound site, you will see what looks like a dry opening and white bone instead of a dark red blood clot. Pain will be excruciating within a couple of days of the extraction. It becomes more intense each day. The area has raw nerves and bone exposed, so anything you put in your mouth is going to affect it and cause pain. This can even cause an earache.
Bad breath and a permanent bad taste in your mouth are also symptoms of dry socket.
If this happens, call your dentist for advice. They can use a medicated paste in the wound site to help it heal.
Tips to make the process easier
When you need wisdom teeth removed, make sure you see a specialist. Your normal dentist may be fantastic, but they may not remove wisdom teeth very often. Ask for a referral to an oral surgeon for wisdom teeth removal. Having the work done by an expert means you will have fewer problems in the future.
If you know you need your wisdom teeth removed, do it while you are still young. Do not put it off. It gets harder to remove them as you get older. As you age, the roots of teeth become more fully embedded into your jaw. This makes it a lot harder to remove them and healing takes longer. The other reason is that the longer you leave wisdom teeth in your mouth, the more likely you are to develop abscesses and cysts over time. You are better having them removed than risking a lifetime of problems they can cause.
Do you still have your wisdom teeth?
Talk to your dentist and ask their advice. If you do not have a good dentist, then look for a good dentist for wisdom teeth removal service in Melbourne. On the other hand, your dentist may recommend having the wisdom teeth removed, but you may not be sure. Seek out a second opinion before making up your mind with ProSmiles.