Extractions (Oral Surgery)
Wisdom tooth extraction is a dental surgical procedure for removal of one or more wisdom teeth. Wisdom teeth are four permanent adult teeth that are at the extreme corners of your mouth both at the top and at the bottom. Sometimes the wisdom tooth can grow without enough room and such a tooth is called an impacted wisdom tooth. This results in wisdom tooth pain, infections and other dental complications including dental abscess. When this happens you are left with no option but to have it pulled out. wisdom tooth extraction can be done by either a dentist or an oral surgeon. In order to prevent future problems, many oral surgeons recommend that extraction be carried out even If the impacted teeth are not causing any problems currently.
Wisdom teeth commonly known as THIRD MOLARS are usually the last teeth to grow in the mouth. They begin to appear between age 17 and 25. Some people never develop them but others do very normally without causing any complications. Many people however develop teeth that do not have adequate room to develop normally. Such an impacted tooth can grow at a certain angle towards the neighboring tooth, grow towards the back of the mouth or even grow at a right angle to the rest of the teeth and appear as though the wisdom tooth is lying within the jaw bone. Impacted wisdom teeth come with many complications such as; pain, gum disease, tooth decay, development of abscess on the wisdom tooth, trapping food particles and debris behind the tooth and complications with orthodontic procedures for teeth straightening.
The surgery overview
The procedure can be carried out at your dentist’s or oral surgeon’s office. If you are removing all your wisdom teeth at the same time, you may have it done at the hospital given the higher risks for complications. For instance, at Belterra Dental, our qualified dentists will review you first before recommending surgery. If there are any infections, they will prescribe some antibiotics to help in healing the infection before scheduling you for surgery. At the point of surgery, the oral surgeon will numb the area using anesthesia so as to prevent wisdom tooth pain. During the procedure, he opens up the gum tissue above the tooth and takes out any bone that may be covering it. He/she will then separate the tissue that connects the tooth to the bone and then remove the wisdom tooth. After this, you will need a couple of stiches. Some stiches dissolve over time while others have to be removed after some few days by a qualified dental surgeon. A cotton gauze pad is then placed over the wound in order to regulate the bleeding.
Tips to help you speed up your recovery
· Gently bite on the gauze pad intermittently and change the pads as they soak with blood. If you are still bleeding 24 hours after surgery, call or pay your dentist a visit.
· Be extra careful not to accidentally bite the inside of your cheek, tongue or lip since your mouth is numb.
· Prop up your head using pillows and avoid lying flat at all cost as it may prolong bleeding.
· Do your best to relax after surgery. A lot of physical activity can lead to increased bleeding.
· For the first few days after surgery, avoid using a straw as it can loosen the blood clot and prolong the healing process.
· Do not eat solid foods after the procedure. Eat soft ones such as pudding of even thin soup. With time, as the healing process progresses, you can introduce solid foods to your diet.
· After a day, gently rinse your mouth with some warm salty water as many times as you can. This will aid in relieving pain and reducing the swelling.
· Avoid smoking for at least 24 hours after surgery. The sucking motion loosens the clot and delays the overall healing process. Additionally, smoking reduces blood supply and can bring contaminants to the wound.
· Do not rub the wounded area using your tongue or your fingers for that matter.
· Brush your teeth and tongue as usual but do so very carefully to avoid causing further injury to the wound.
If your wisdom teeth are not causing you any problems, it can be quite hard to decide whether or not to have them removed so as to avoid complications in the future. However, it is always wise to consider the life-long benefits of wisdom teeth removal since we all agree that prevention is better than cure. Besides, it is not harmful to have your wisdom teeth removed.