Before you undergo wisdom teeth removal, your oral surgeon or dentist will explain what you can expect and respond to any questions or concerns you may have. (You should indicate any illnesses you may have and mention the medications you take.) The difficulty in removing a wisdom tooth depends, in part, on the tooth’s root development and the position of the tooth in relation to the other teeth and the jawbone. In addition, an impacted tooth sometimes required more complex surgery.
As a rule, wisdom tooth extraction will take place in your oral surgeon or dentist’s office with intravenous sedation or local anesthesia, based on your particular situation. After having the procedure, you may experience some mild discomfort and swelling, which is not unusual. These problems may be treated with cold compresses and prescription medication, and you may also be advised to eat soft foods for a brief period and then return to following your regular diet.
When Surgery is Needed
Certain symptoms may indicate that your wisdom teeth (third molars) have appeared and surfaced and that they ought to be removed before becoming impacted, which is quite common. If that occurs, this may cause crowding of your secondary molars, resulting in an oral infection, facial swelling or pain, and swelling of the gum line as well.
Typically, your dentist will recommend removing wisdom teeth immediately to eliminate any potential problems. Briefly, the procedure involves removal of the gum tissue related to the tooth, detachment of the connective tissue between the jawbone and the tooth, removal of tooth, and suturing the opening that was created.
What Happens During Surgery
When a wisdom tooth is extracted, your oral surgeon or dentist will do the following:
- Make an incision in the gum, exposing the tooth and jawbone
- Separate the tooth into sections if necessary
- Remove the tooth and any debris that is left in the site
- Suture the wound to promote healing
- Uses gauze to fill the empty socket, which helps in the formation of a blood clot and controls bleeding
After having the procedure, plan to spend the remainder of the day resting, and drink plenty of water. On the following day, you can resume your normal activities, but for a week or more, avoid all strenuous activity, as this might cause the blood clot to become dislodged from the socket.
“Dental – Extraction of Impacted Wisdom Teeth.” UO – University Health Center. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 July 2010. http://healthcenter.uoregon.edu/patientinfo/dental/impactwisdom.html.
“Dry socket – MayoClinic.com.” Mayo Clinic medical information and tools for healthy living – MayoClinic.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 July 2010. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dry-socket/DS00778.
“Dry socket: Symptoms – MayoClinic.com.” Mayo Clinic medical information and tools for healthy living – MayoClinic.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 July 2010. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dry-socket/DS00778/DSECTION=symptoms.