What are Wisdom Teeth?
- These are the third molars (one in each quadrant in the mouth) that usually appear during your late teens or early twenties.
- The term “wisdom teeth” is related to the fact that they appear later than all the other adult teeth, so when the person has become “wiser” with age by that time.
Why Can My Wisdom Teeth Hurt?
- Most people don’t have enough room for wisdom teeth. For this reason, they often erupt on angles or sideways and even only appear partially and stop.
- Due to this partial eruption, this becomes an area that is difficult to clean, with food and bacterial buildup can lead to a localized infection called Pericoronitis.
Why Should I Consider Wisdom Teeth Removal?
- They are difficult to keep clean
- To avoid or to get rid of infection
- To avoid or to remove dental decay
- To avoid affecting the adjacent teeth and putting them at risk for decay/infection
- To avoid cyst formation
How are Wisdom Teeth “Pulled”?
- There is a common misconception that dentists “pull” teeth. Although we have instruments that look like pliers, dental extractions do not involve any “pulling” mechanics.
- The bone that surrounds the tooth can expand. With special instruments placed between the tooth and bone, the dentist expands and widens the space around the tooth to loosen it. Sometimes, some bone may be removed to aid in this process. Sometimes, the tooth is divided into segments to aid in their removal.
- If an incision into the tissues was made to access the wisdom teeth, then sutures will be placed afterwards
What is the Time needed for Wisdom Teeth Recovery?
- Pain and swelling after wisdom teeth removal occurs most during the first 48 hours. This will be managed with medication prescribed by your dentist and with ice pack applications
- During the first 24 hours, you cannot drink from a straw, spit or engage in any strenuous activity including heaving lifting; and you will need to be on a clear liquid diet
- You will also be asked to rinse with an antibacterial rinse or salt water rinse starting on day 2
- Pain and swelling will start to subside on day 3 and by day 7-10 you will be back to your normal self
- Smoking will delay healing, so if you are a smoker, ideally you do not want to be smoking for 7-10 days
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