A Little Wisdom on Why Wisdom Teeth are No Big Deal
Are impacted wisdom teeth causing you trouble? Wise up about the source of your struggle and get smart about what you need to do to get real relief.
What You Should Know About Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth, also known as your third molars, are usually the last teeth to emerge or they may never appear at all. These teeth might come in normally and never pose a problem. But when they get trapped in your gums, they are considered to be impacted wisdom teeth and can lead to serious dental trouble, so they need to be removed. Performed by your dentist or an oral surgeon, wisdom teeth removal is a routine, outpatient procedure that can provide quick relief for wisdom teeth pain. They’ll give you instructions for both before the procedure and for the actual day of wisdom teeth removal. These include certain preparation directions, such as the time to get to the clinic, the need to arrange for transportation, and medication instructions.
6 Steps of Wisdom Teeth Removal
If you worry that the procedure will be painful, think again, because you will be given anesthesia and will not feel any part of the wisdom teeth removal. You can soothe any stress by remembering that the dentist will be easing your wisdom teeth pain. It can also help to understand what’s involved in every step, so here’s what the dentist will do:
- Expose the teeth and bone by making an incision in the gum.
- Cut out any part of the bone that makes it hard to reach the impacted wisdom teeth.
- Take out the painful wisdom teeth.
- Wash away any debris from the tooth or the bone and clean the area.
- Close the wound with stitches to allow for proper healing.
- Reduce bleeding and encourage a protective blood clot to form by placing gauze over the extraction site.
Recovery After the Removal
When the extraction is over, you will remain in the dentist’s chair until the anesthesia wears off. Then, you will be sent home to heal. You can make your recovery swift and uneventful by following your dentist’s advice along with these trusted tips:
- Rest and remain calm the day of your wisdom teeth removal. Resume normal activities the next day, being sure to avoid anything that could damage the extraction area.
- Change the gauze over the wound as directed by your dentist.
- Use an ice pack to reduce swelling or bruising, which should improve in a few days.
- Relieve wisdom teeth pain with an over-the-counter or prescription medication recommended by your dentist.
- Drink plenty of water after wisdom teeth removal, but avoid any caffeinated, carbonated, alcoholic, or extremely hot beverages for 24 hours.
- No drinking with a straw for one week.
- Consume soft foods and liquids only for the first 24 hours. When you feel comfortable, start adding firmer foods.
- Don’t brush your teeth, rinse your mouth, or spit during the first 24 hours after wisdom teeth removal. Start brushing your teeth after the first 24 hours, being careful to not disturb the stitches.
- The day after surgery and throughout the following week, rinse your mouth gently with warm saltwater every few hours and after meals to prevent infection.