Why do I need to have my Wisdom Teeth removed?
Your wisdom teeth arrive sometime between 17 and 25 - and sometimes, they emerge without any problems, simply lining up with others behind your molars. However, if your mouth is too crowded for your third molars to develop normally, you might come up against a few issues.
Most people have their wisdom teeth removed for one of the following reasons:
Impacted Wisdom Teeth - if your third molars don’t come in normally, they might end up trapped in your jawbone or your gums - which is a painful experience. Having them removed is the best way to reduce your pain in the long run.
The Wrong Angle - If your wisdom teeth come in at an awkward angle, they might end up pressing against your other teeth, which will have a number of knock-on effects other than the discomfort.
Cavities or Gum Disease - Wisdom teeth can be tricky to reach with a toothbrush or dental floss, so it’s not difficult to develop a cavity back there. Having them removed removes the issue.
What happens during a Wisdom Teeth removal?
Before surgery, you’ll meet with the surgeon, in order to talk through the process. You’ll have an opportunity to ask any questions, tell your surgeon about any health problems you have and list the drugs you take on a regular basis. You’ll also discuss what type of anaesthesia you would prefer - you can either be asleep during your surgery or simply have a local numbing injection or even laughing gas to help you relax during the surgery.
During the surgery, which will take 45 minutes or so, you’ll be given anaesthesia so you don’t feel pain during the removal, and then your wisdom teeth will be removed. Your surgeon may have to cut your gums or bone in order to remove the teeth properly, and if that’s the case they’ll stitch everything up so you heal quickly, with stitches that usually dissolve after a couple of days.
After your surgery, you might be able to drive home to begin your recovery if you had a local anaesthetic and are feeling alert. If you opted for general anaesthesia or are still feeling drowsy, someone will need to drive you home
Most people will feel little to no pain following the procedure, although you might have swelling and a little discomfort for 3 days or so. It’ll take up to a few weeks for your mouth to completely heal.
How can I recover more quickly from Wisdom Tooth extraction?
Eat soft foods like pasta, rice or soup, and drink a lot of fluids
Take the painkillers your doctor prescribes in order to ease any discomfort or swelling
You can use an ice pack on your face to ease any swelling or skin colour changes that may occur
Don’t drink through a straw or brush against blood clots - this can loosen them, and they’re an important part of the healing process.
Don’t smoke, it can slow your healing
Not what you’re looking for? Take a look through our archives to find the dental procedure you’ve been offered, and to learn more about what to expect when you’re in the waiting room.