What To Expect During Impacted Wisdom Teeth Removal

wisdom teeth xray

When your wisdom teeth become impacted, it can lead to serious health issues. Most dentists will recommend that they be surgically removed to prevent cysts, gum disease, and benign tumors from forming. As with any surgical process, you may be a little nervous and unsure of what to expect from the procedure. Below is a quick guide to take you through the process from surgical preparation through the recovery. 

Preparing for Surgery

Once your dentist has determined your wisdom teeth are impacted, you will first have an appointment with an oral surgeon. During this visit, they will explain the process and also allow you to ask any questions regarding the procedure or the recovery process. They will then go over your personal health history and inquire about any medications that you are taking. 

For your preparation, you will need to arrange for care for children or pets during your procedure, secure a ride to and from the appointment, and take a few days off work or school for the procedure and recovery. 

The Day of Surgery

You can expect your procedure to take anywhere between 45 minutes to an hour. In some cases, the teeth may be stubborn, and the surgery can run longer, but it rarely occurs. You will be under oral or IV sedation so you will feel no pain or discomfort during the procedure, nor will you be awake during the process. If you are anxious before the procedure or about the IV, you may be offered nitrous oxide. After the anesthesia has been administered, and the surgeon is sure you are asleep, they will use surgical tools to cut into your gums and extract the teeth. Once the teeth are successfully removed, your surgeon will put in dissolvable sutures to allow your gums to heal properly. Your mouth will then be packed with gauze to control the bleeding, and you will then be brought out of sedation. 

Recovery and Aftercare

Right after surgery, you are likely to feel groggy and will experience some mild pain and swelling. Your surgeon will recommend medication to control the pain by either writing you a prescription or discussing over-the-counter medication to take. Driving will be restricted for 12 to 24 hours, so you will need to have a ride home and someone with you who can help you understand post-op instructions. The rest of the day, you should take it easy and rest when possible. 

You will be able to eat immediately after your procedure but may not have much of an appetite as the anesthetic fully wears off. Stick to soft foods at first until most of the swelling goes down. Also, avoid hot foods as the gums where the teeth were removed will be sensitive. Avoid nuts, seeds, hard foods, and straws during the healing process to avoid damaging your stitches. 

Follow all post-operative instructions on hygiene closely to avoid infection. You will need to avoid brushing your teeth, rinsing your mouth and flossing for the first 24 hours. Saltwater rinses are advised to aid healing and help with pain and can be started right away. Just be sure not to spit the solutions out as the suction can interfere with healing. Simply allow the solution to drip out of your mouth. Change the gauze as needed until there is no more bleeding. 

You should be mostly recovered in three to four days and can resume normal activities, though it can take up to a month for the site to fully heal, so you should still avoid sucking through straws, smoking, and heavy exercise for about a month. 

What Are The Signs It’s Time for Your Wisdom Teeth to Come Out?

wisdom teeth x-rays

Your wisdom teeth are a third set of molars, which usually appear when you are between 17 and 21 years of age. These teeth are rarely functional and therefore cause crowding and other issues within the mouth. Therefore, dental professionals will often recommend removing them before they break through to prevent any potential problems. The following are some common signs it might be time for your wisdom teeth to come out. If you notice any of these signs, contact us today to schedule a consultation:

Signs of Impacted Wisdom Teeth

If your wisdom teeth try to come in but don’t have the space to emerge fully from the gums, they become impacted. This can lead to:

  • Jaw pain.
  • Difficulty opening your mouth.
  • Bad breath.
  • Stiffness or swelling in the jaw.
  • Bleeding, tender or swollen gums.

General Symptoms of Wisdom Teeth Issues

Even if your wisdom teeth aren’t impacted, they can still cause issues. You could experience the following:

  • Irritation & Pain: As your wisdom teeth grow, they can cause pain and discomfort in the mouth. An x-ray can rule out other causes of pain and zero in on the wisdom tooth problem.
  • Problems Eating: Sometimes, when your wisdom teeth are trying to come through, it can cause food to get stuck between the tops of those teeth and your gums. This can cause issues with eating and can make proper oral hygiene nearly impossible. Often, extraction is recommended to prevent further complications. 
  • Shifting Teeth: If your teeth were straight and now are beginning to look crooked or crowded, newly emerged wisdom teeth could be the culprit. 
  • Sinus Problems: When wisdom teeth come in through the upper gums, the roots can rub against or put pressure on the sinuses, which can lead to sinus related issues. In some cases, it can even lead to congestion and headaches.
  • Inflamed Gums: The tissue around the emerging or not yet broken through wisdom teeth can easily become inflamed due to various issues like trapped food. This is a condition called pericoronitis. 
  • Cavities: When your gums are irritated and you are unable to properly brush due to food getting stuck, this can obviously lead to cavities. Bacteria thrive in this type of environment, making your teeth more susceptible to the development of cavities. 

Do Wisdom Teeth Always Have to Come Out?

There are several schools of thought on the subject. Some experts believe you should leave wisdom teeth alone if they aren’t bothering anything or trying to emerge, or if the mouth has room to accommodate them, should they push through. Others believe it’s best to remove them if you suspect they will try to come in and there isn’t room to accommodate them in the mouth. Some orthodontists recommend having them out early, when a patient is still in braces to prevent a potential shift in a newly straightened smile should they come through the gum line. Thankfully, the skilled professionals at Aspire Surgical can easily determine which category you fall into and either recommend extraction or promote and wait and see approach. Contact us today to schedule a visit to learn more.

What to Expect From Your Wisdom Teeth Extraction

Wisdom Teeth Surgeons

Over three million people have their wisdom teeth taken out every year.

If your dentist has talked to you about the possibility of wisdom teeth extraction, we understand that you might feel a bit anxious about the procedure. You might even wonder whether or not it’s truly necessary.

In this post, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about not only why wisdom teeth removal is so important, but also what you can expect out of the procedure.

Understanding what actually happens during the procedure, as well as what the recovery process will look like, can help to quell your nerves. You’ll also have a better idea of any questions you’d like to ask your dentist.

Read on to master the basics of wisdom teeth extraction.

Signs You Need to Consider Wisdom Teeth Removal

Of course, your oral surgeon is the most qualified person to tell you when the time is right to have your wisdom teeth extracted.

That said, there are a few signs you can be on the lookout for and inform your dentist of.

Have you been dealing with serious pain when eating?

Food may have gotten stuck between your gums and the tops of your wisdom teeth. This pain could also be caused by incorrect growth and overcrowding due to the appearance of your wisdom teeth. After all, your mouth now has to make space for thirty-two teeth, not just twenty-eight!

Especially if you’re experiencing severe pain in the jaw and at the tooth site, it may be time to discuss the possibility of extraction with your dentist.

You may also deal with severe halitosis or bad breath in plain English.

This often happens because your wisdom teeth can make it tough for you to properly clean the rest of your teeth and gums. This may even lead to cavities and inflamed, bleeding gums. It’s especially important to act quickly if you suspect cavities and tooth decay, as this can easily infect other teeth.

Many people don’t realize that the bacteria found in cavities can also spread to other parts of the body, including the heart. The truth is that tooth decay is an issue that can and does impact your overall health.

Interestingly, sinus issues are also a sign that you need to consider wisdom teeth extraction.

Because teeth are growing in the upper part of your jaw and developing roots, they actually end up pressing against your sinuses. If you’ve experienced an uptick in congestion and sinus headaches in addition to tooth pain and the other symptoms we’ve listed here, now is the time to see your dentist.  

Why Wisdom Teeth Removal Matters

We understand that no one likes the thought of having to undergo surgery.

However, in order to protect your oral and even overall health, wisdom teeth extraction is something you can’t put off.

Wisdom teeth (which are actually the third row of molars) become impacted because your mouth simply doesn’t have the space for them.

This can cause wisdom teeth to grow at strange, painful angles. Sometimes, they can’t break through your gums at all, resulting in fully impacted wisdom teeth. Even if they are only partially impacted (meaning you’ll only spot a part of the crown poking through the gums) they still need to be removed.

Unlike developing great flossing and brushing habits, there’s really nothing you can do to stop the development of impacted wisdom teeth. Unfortunately, it all really boils down to luck. Some people don’t need to have their wisdom teeth taken out because they just happen to come in correctly. Others are fortunate enough to have been born without wisdom teeth at all.

If left untreated, wisdom teeth can cause the other teeth in your mouth to become crooked — even after you’ve had braces or other corrective orthodontia. These teeth can also create painful cysts in your jawbone, which can put intense pressure on your nerves. In extreme cases, a cyst may develop into a benign tumor, which will require extensive surgery to remove some of the bone and tissue surrounding it.

A failure to remove wisdom teeth can also lead to increased tooth decay and gingivitis, gum disease, and serious bacterial infections in the mouth.

What to Expect from the Procedure

Now that you know more about why you need to have your wisdom teeth removed, let’s talk about what you can expect from the actual procedure.

Remember that the entire process will only take one day, and you’ll be given local or general anesthesia to ensure you don’t experience any pain during the surgery itself.

You and your oral surgeon will talk about any health conditions you have and medications you take before the surgery. You’ll also have the opportunity to ask any questions you might have about both the surgery and the recovery process. It’s normal to feel a bit apprehensive the day of the surgery.

Most extractions take only about one hour.

If your wisdom tooth hasn’t broken through your gums, a tiny incision is made so that the surgeon can reach it. In some cases, the surgeon will also need to remove a small section of bone that covers your tooth.

Depending on the size and the angle of the tooth itself, it may actually need to be cut into smaller pieces and removed. After the tooth is out, the area is thoroughly cleaned to prevent infection.

If an incision was required, you’ll get stitches to seal your gums back up. The surgeon will also put gauze over the area to allow a blood clot to form.

The Recovery Process

We’ve all seen those silly videos of patients getting out of their wisdom teeth surgeries, still feeling some of the effects of anesthesia.

While these videos are certainly entertaining, they’re also a good reminder of why you should have a friend drive you home afterward. Once you get home, you’ll begin to regain a bit of feeling in your mouth. You may experience pain and swelling, but it’s important to refrain from touching your mouth to avoid spreading bacteria.

On the day of your surgery, you can use an ice pack to help to manage the pain and bring down the swelling. You should rest for the remainder of the day. In some cases, your surgeon may give you prescription painkillers and other medication to take in the days following your surgery. You should use this medication only as directed.

Familiarize yourself with the signs of an allergic reaction to these painkillers, and stop taking them if you experience an allergy.

You’ll need to be careful about what you eat in the days following surgery. Hard foods are certainly to be avoided in the first few days, as is coffee, alcohol, and of course, cigarettes.

Soft foods like milkshakes, lukewarm soup, jello, and yogurt are ok to eat. If you’re drinking a smoothie, refrain from using a straw.

Next Steps

In the majority of cases, you’ll be totally healed from your wisdom teeth extraction surgery in about three or four days.

However, if your teeth were severely impacted or growing at sharp angles, recovery could take up to a week. Remember that it will take the wound from the surgery a few weeks to heal, so you’ll need to be cautious and proactive when it comes to preventing infection.

We suggest that you avoid hitting the gym too hard, spitting, using a straw, or eating tough foods for a few weeks after your procedure.

You also need to ensure you’re caring for the wound and your teeth properly. Your dentist will give you more specific instructions, but you should rinse your mouth with salt and warm water about five or six times every day after the surgery.

Your dentist may also tell you to avoid brushing and flossing your teeth the night of surgery. When you do resume brushing, be especially gentle.

If you experience bleeding in the mouth, you can use a bit of gauze to gently dab the area. If bleeding persists or becomes more severe, get in touch with your dentist at once.

Are You Ready for Your Wisdom Teeth Extraction?

We hope that this post has helped you to understand why wisdom teeth extraction matters, as well as what you can expect from both the surgery and the recovery process.

Above all, ensure that you’re working with a dental professional that has experience, an excellent bedside manner, and who can fully explain the procedure to you.

Are you ready to talk to a dental professional about your wisdom teeth? Dealing with another dental issue that you’d like a professional opinion about?

If so, then schedule an appointment with our practice today.

We’re committed to providing you with the best possible care, ensuring that you know what to expect out of any dental procedure, and helping you to understand how to take the best care of your teeth and mouth.

Have You Extracted Your Wisdom Teeth? Here Are Some Recovery Tips

Extracted Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom tooth extraction is a beneficial but also invasive dental treatment. If you’re not careful, there are consequences that can occur that can make your life a bit difficult. So, to help you prevent complications and properly recover following wisdom tooth extraction in Salt Lake City, our dental team has some tips for you.

Tip No. 1: Stop the bleeding and reduce the swelling. You can stop the bleeding by placing a piece of gauze on the surgical site. When it’s there, bite down for about 45 minutes. Once the pad is full of blood, please remove it and place a clean pad on the area. To reduce the swelling, ice outside the area with an ice pack or bag of frozen vegetables. It’s best to ice it for 15 minutes and then take a 15-minute break. Repeat this process until the swelling subsides.

Tip No. 2: Take the necessary medications. Your dentist should have given you pain medication following your surgery. If this is the case for you, please take the medication as recommended. If not, feel free to take over-the-counter painkillers.

Tip No. 3: Have a soft-foods diet. It’s best to avoid eating hard and crunchy foods and stick to eating soft foods, like mashed potatoes, yogurt, ice cream, etc. This can help you avoid creating issues in the area.

If you have any questions about how to properly recover after your wisdom teeth have been removed, please call Aspire Surgical at your earliest convenience. Our dental team is here to help you in any way we can, and we look forward to giving you the answers you need to properly recover!

Welcome to Our New Blog!

Aspire Surgical Doctors

Here at [practice_name], we endeavor to use our new blog as a regular means for publishing valuable content for our community through monthly blog posts. Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, we’re able to further explore some of the most important topics pertaining to our industry and area of expertise here on our website through these articles.

Each profession tends to be its own little niche, which is a good thing because it creates a unique space for our services and a place for you to learn and implement helpful ideas that can benefit you and the people you care about.

We’re excited to share this ongoing knowledge base of blog articles with this online community. These blogs provide timely and relevant information that’s conveniently accessible online. Indeed, we hope that this community will use the valuable information found in our regular blog posts, because they are an effective way for us to reach out to you on a monthly basis, while you still enjoy the comforts of your own home.

If you have any questions or want more information, we invite you to call our team at Aspire Surgical. We look forward to helping you in any way we can, and we thank you for the opportunity!