Photo By Olivier Le Moal at Shutterstock
If you have extensive pain at the back of your mouth, It may feel like your jaw is about to drop off. However, it’s often caused by third molars also called wisdom teeth trying to cut through the gums. Typically, wisdom teeth emerge after age 17, sometimes as late as the mid to late 20s. These teeth are leftover from our ancestors who needed the extra grinding power to chew up roots and tough food prior to digestion.
Although we are for the most part no longer hunter-gatherers, these late-blooming teeth often cause some real issues. If you have major problems with your wisdom teeth and require surgery, your dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon in McKinney, TX, for wisdom teeth removal.
Do I Need Wisdom Teeth Removal?
If your wisdom teeth come out properly aligned and functioning normally, you may not have any problem with them. However, the vast majority of people have issues with wisdom teeth at some point after they emerge. Therefore, mini dental professionals recommend removing them to avoid negative impacts to the surrounding teeth and gum tissues.
Unfortunately, wisdom teeth tend to do strange things. Many dentists remove wisdom teeth that have emerged from the gum line but may refer clients to experienced oral surgeons such as those available at NextGen OMS.
Here are some of the reasons that you may need wisdom teeth removal:
- Remove them to prevent overcrowding of your other teeth. This is especially important if you have undergone expensive orthodontic treatment and want to maintain your straight, even smile.
- Wisdom teeth have a habit of growing in the incorrect position. This allows food particles to become trapped, attracting bacteria that can cause cavities and other issues.
- Partially emerged wisdom teeth make room for bacteria to collect at the gum line. This often leads to inflammation and pain.
- Impacted wisdom teeth remain trapped in the jaw and do not rise above the gums. Often, a cyst forms near an impacted tooth, damaging surrounding teeth and often causing infections in your jawbone.
To avoid these and other issues, consider wisdom teeth removal from a licensed, experienced oral surgeon.
Wisdom Teeth Removal Surgery
Wisdom teeth removal typically takes place in a single day. However, if you need all four wisdom teeth removed, the oral surgeon will discuss whether you would prefer to do it in two separate procedures. The surgeon uses an anesthetic to prevent pain but you may remain awake during the surgery. It all depends on what type of anesthesia the doctor uses.
During the surgery, the oral surgeon will cut your gums and possibly your bone in order to extract the wisdom tooth. In some cases, they may have to cut the wisdom teeth into pieces in order to remove it. After the wisdom teeth removal, the doctor will clean out any infection prior to stitching up the area. Typically, the stitches dissolve on their own within a few days. If your stitches do not dissolve or the doctor uses non-dissolving stitches, you may have to come back to have them taken out.
What Can You Expect?
Extracting wisdom teeth is routine business for in-demand oral surgeons such as Dr. Eftekhari. Although every case is unique, you may experience complications when your wisdom teeth fail to erupt. rather than waiting for an infection to develop that could threaten your jawbone and general health, consider proactively removing your wisdom teeth with the help of a reputed oral surgeon.
It can take up to a week to heal from the procedure, but here’s what you can expect in the first 24 hours:
- You may bleed for several hours following the surgery. The oral surgeon will pack the area with gauze and give you extra gauze to help keep the area clean. It’s important to bite down on the gauze immediately after the surgery to help encourage blood clotting and stop the bleeding.
- The oral surgeon may also prescribe antibiotics following your wisdom teeth removal to help prevent infection.
- You may receive a prescription for pain medication to provide comfort through the first day or two when the pain is greatest. Note that some people have little or no discomfort while others experience pain for several days. It all depends on the issues you had and what the surgeon had to do to take out your wisdom teeth.
- To minimize facial swelling, you can ice the area that hurts for about 10 minutes at a time, leaving 20 minutes between intervals. This makes a big difference in the first 24 hours following surgery.
Although you’ll receive detailed instructions following your wisdom teeth removal surgery, you may need to stick to a liquid diet until the anesthetic wears off. Afterward, many people prefer to eat soft foods such as eggs, mashed potatoes, and bananas for the first few days.
After the first day, you can rinse your mouth with salt water to help avoid infection. To treat swollen areas after the first day, use a warm towel and hold it to the affected area for 20 minutes at a time, resting 20 minutes between each application.
Avoid Dry Socket
Watch out for signs of a blood clot that can cause pain and foul breath. It typically happens three to four days after the extraction. However, keeping the area clean can help you prevent it.
If you need help understanding the procedure, you can ask during your initial appointment with Dr. Eftekhari. We are passionate about patient education and want you to fully understand the treatment plan. Contact NextGen OMS in McKinney, TX to set up a consultation for wisdom tooth removal or other oral surgery procedures.