Contrary to what the name might suggest, your wisdom teeth don’t provide any additional wisdom! Instead, these molars are usually the last to erupt through the gum’s surface. As the third and final set of molars, they don’t become an issue until people are between 17-25 years of age. It’s within this age bracket that we do the most extractions for wisdom teeth. Still, we find that there is a shroud of mystery surrounding the extraction process. So, before you call David C. Wood Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.
1. Why do wisdom teeth need to be extracted?
For most people, impacted wisdom teeth are the main reason for having them extracted. Simply put, this means that the molars don’t have enough room to come through the gums, either being blocked by other molars or the jaw bone. Not having them removed can lead to jaw pain, swelling gums, and even abscess growth.
2. What happens during a wisdom teeth extraction?
The removal procedure is an outpatient surgery. Most people are put under general anesthesia so they can sleep right through the process. Being put under is a common practice, especially for those who need to have all four wisdom teeth removed. While you’re asleep, your dentist or maxillofacial surgeon will extract your wisdom teeth, removing all of the nerve and root tissue that has grown in the area. You should avoid eating anything before the procedure, and you’ll be kept on a strict soft diet for a few days following your surgery.
3. Will I be in pain afterward?
Like any procedure, you should expect some discomfort and swelling afterward. Our team of dental experts may provide you with ice packs for your face and a dose of mild pain medication to take when you feel pain. You will also have gauze packed in the back of your mouth, so make sure you gently remove these before attempting to eat anything. Most people find that drinking things through a straw is the easiest for 24-48 hours following their procedure.
4. What is a dry socket?
A dry socket is the painful inflammation of the tooth socket in the jaw bone that can happen with any tooth extraction. However, they are most common with wisdom teeth extractions, leaving people in severe agony and pain if not treated immediately. If you have a sharp, excruciating pain that’s traveling up into your ear, then you likely have a dry socket. Call us right away, and we’ll use a medicated paste or gauze pad to relieve your pain.
Smile with confidence.
Here at David C. Wood Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we pride ourselves on giving people confidence in their smiles. We not only provide wisdom tooth extractions, but we also provide our patients with professional teeth whitening, full or partial dentures, and sleep apnea treatment. If you’re looking for a reliable dental team in Carmel or Fishers, IN, schedule your next appointment with us. Call today at (317) 844-0592.