What can I expect from wisdom teeth removal?

Wisdom teeth surgery is a very common procedure as it effectively alleviates pain caused by impacted and infected wisdom teeth.

A lot of people don’t have enough space for wisdom teeth when they erupt, and as a result, experience pain, as well as tooth decay and other oral health issues. But what are impacted wisdom teeth, exactly? And, what can you expect from a removal procedure?

What are impacted wisdom teeth?

In most cases, wisdom teeth become impacted when there is not enough space for the teeth in the jaw. Wisdom teeth can also grow at an angle, causing them to become impacted. This can cause pain and discomfort, as well as a number of other issues, including tooth decay and damage to the surrounding teeth and gums.

What are the symptoms?

While some people won’t have any issues, others will experience some very clear signs that their wisdom teeth are impacted. Some of the most common symptoms include very intense pain in the mouth. In fact, this pain may even extend to the ear and throat and can cause considerable discomfort. Impacted wisdom teeth can also cause swelling in the face, as well as in the gum line at the back of the mouth. If a tooth becomes infected, one may notice an unusual (and unpleasant) taste in the mouth, bad breath, and difficulty opening the mouth, as well as bleeding gums and pain in the jaw.

Is it necessary to remove wisdom teeth?

It’s not always necessary to remove wisdom teeth — some people have enough space for their teeth to erupt without surgical intervention. For others, however, there is simply not enough space in the jaw for wisdom teeth to erupt without having an effect on the surrounding teeth and gums. We recommend removing wisdom teeth if there is infection, disease, cysts or tumours around the teeth. If you experience any uncomfortable and painful symptoms, you are likely to benefit from a removal procedure.

If you’re concerned about the implications of having your wisdom teeth removed, bear in mind that wisdom teeth are actually not necessary for our modern diets and lifestyles. They are an evolutionary remnant that are no longer essential to our survival, so you don’t have to worry about life without them. In fact, if your wisdom teeth have become impacted and are causing crowding in your mouth, they can do more harm than good and lead to a range of health issues.

What does the wisdom tooth removal procedure involve?

Before the surgery, we will examine your teeth and mouth to confirm that your wisdom teeth have become impacted and that a removal procedure is the best treatment option for you.  We’ll take an x-ray to assess any damage of the surrounding teeth and bones.

You’ll be given an anaesthetic before we make a small incision in your gums. Any problematic bone will be removed along with the wisdom teeth. Depending on the case, the teeth may be removed in pieces. The incision will be carefully closed with stitches, and your wound will be dressed in gauze. The entire procedure generally only takes between 30 and 60 minutes to complete.

It’s quite normal to experience some swelling and pain after surgery, so we recommend that you stick to soft foods for around a week following the procedure. Try foods like soups, mashed potatoes, yoghurt and ice cream to minimise chewing.

Have you noticed any discomfort, pain or swelling around the back of your mouth? It’s possible that you might require wisdom tooth surgery. Get in touch with us to make an appointment and we’ll perform a thorough examination before recommending a treatment plan.