Wisdom teeth usually emerge by the age of 25 though some people never develop these teeth. Whilst not all wisdom teeth need to be removed, there is the chance they might cause problems later on in life.
Increasingly more people are suffering from wisdom teeth problems due to the teeth not appearing completely in the mouth. While some experience no symptoms, others eventually experience one of the following signs and symptoms of wisdom tooth growth:
- Other teeth start to crowd around in the mouth (in some cases, undoing orthodontic work).
- The wisdom tooth grows only part way into the mouth.
- A flap of gum grows over the wisdom tooth.
- Pain and swelling caused by bacterial growth sometimes in conjunction with rotting food and debris.
- Pressure pain which can lead to difficulty in swallowing if untreated.
- Swollen gums with a bad taste.
- Decay eventually causing pain and misery. This can oftentimes be difficult to treat due to the relative position of the wisdom teeth at the back of the mouth.
- Wisdom teeth can be lying in a number of positions called impactions, as can be seen from the diagram below. This has a bearing on the how they are surgically removed.
Careful Planning Before Surgery
It is very important that we plan thoroughly for the procedure as there are risks involved with the surgery. In the lower jaw we are more interested in the impacted position relative to the underlying inferior alveolar nerve and blood vessels. These vessels control the sensation to lower lip, teeth and part of the tongue. As a result it is important to have the treatment by someone who is experienced in these procedures.
Treatment is usually carried out under local anaesthetic. Nevertheless we understand that some of our clients may be anxious to undergo this procedure. As a result we are able to provide sedation for this procedure.
At integrated Dentalcare we are able to provide tooth removal assisted by the waterlase. This makes the procedure safer and less traumatic as it takes the vibration and drilling sensation out of the procedure.
Once the treatment has been completed we place dissolving stitches for your convenience. Low level laser therapy is used to encourage faster healing and diminished after pain.
To give our clients peace of mind during the healing phase they are able to contact us after hours, if they require advice.
Tooth Extraction Recovery
Having a tooth out is the same as having an operation and, because of this, you must look after the area to speed healing and to reduce the risk of infection. Here are some pointers:
- For the first 24 hours, try to avoid eating hot food, don’t smoke, don’t drink any alcohol and try not to disturb any blood clot which might have formed.
- Don’t rinse your mouth for six hours after extraction. After that, rinse gently with warm salty water – half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of water is enough.
- Brush your teeth as normal to keep your mouth as clean as possible.
- You may feel some small pieces of bone work their way out of the socket – don’t worry, this is perfectly normal.
- There may be some swelling and a bit of discomfort in the first two to three days. If you need to, take some ordinary painkillers – aspirin, ibuprofen or paracetomol will be fine.
- If you feel pain immediately after the tooth has been removed, it might be where the blood clot has broken down leaving an empty hole in the gum. This is called a ‘dry socket’ and will need to be looked at by your dentist. Simply go back and the dentist will pack the wound to ease your discomfort.