dental care

Wisdom Tooth Extraction
All Your Questions Answered

Wisdom Tooth Extractioncan be a nasty business. It is one of the most common and troublesome dental procedures that cannot possibly be prevented in some instances.

The growth of wisdom teeth is normal, and it is not supposed to cause any trouble nor does it automatically require an extraction. However, since the sudden growth of an extra tooth requires more space for it, this tends to cause problems that affect your other teeth.

Wisdom tooth extraction is rather common, so it is nothing to worry about especially if you have a dentist that you can trust. Costs may vary depending on your location.

This procedure is often considered a major dental procedure so if you have a dental plan, you have to double check whether it is part of the coverage.

Some basic coverage dental plans do not cover such extractions or do so only partially.

The Biggest Questions

  A few questions you may have on Wisdom Tooth Extraction include:

  • When You Need It and Why
  • Should You Have Your Wisdom Tooth Extracted?
  • The Wisdom Teeth Surgery
  • What Comes After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

1. When You Need It and Why

wisdom tooth extractionWhen the effects of the growth of wisdom teeth is too extreme that the other teeth crowd together or if there is not enough space for the wisdom teeth to grow out, that’s when wisdom tooth extraction comes in.

In some cases, the surgery is a treatment or a corrective procedure, and in some, it could be a preventive procedure.

If the wisdom teeth do not have enough space, the tendency is for them to become impacted. This is a case which usually calls for an extraction. If the wisdom teeth manage to break through the gums, extractions may be avoided.

However, there are instances when even wisdom teeth that manage to grow out needs to be removed. For example, if it threatens the condition of the other teeth near it, or if it causes a flap of gum tissue under which food debris can be lodged in and eventually cause gum infection or tooth decay problems.

In extreme cases, the worst that can occur following the growth of wisdom teeth are infection, damage to teeth, damage to bone, or growth of a cyst.

2. Should You Have Your Wisdom Tooth Extracted?

If your wisdom teeth aren’t causing huge problems for you, you can still gain some benefits from having it taken out. In such cases, the extraction would be purely preventive. Wisdom teeth tend to be unpredictable, especially when they aren’t finished growing yet. You cannot guess whether they’d be causing problems someday, or perhaps they’d start growing at an awkward angle and cause future problems. Sometimes, dentists advise people to have wisdom teeth extracted since an extraction does not cause any harm and wisdom teeth left alone may someday do so.

3. The Wisdom Teeth Surgery

A wisdom teeth surgery can be troublesome since recovery can take some time. It is better to get wisdom teeth extracted during your teen years when the roots of the teeth are not yet fully developed and they are still easier to remove, which means you will have a shorter and smoother recovery time. However, if you reach the age of 30 without encountering problems with your wisdom teeth, you can rest assured that your wisdom teeth have settled and won’t likely cause any more problems.

It is also important to note that wisdom teeth extraction is just like any other surgery: it comes with risks. Some complications may arise during the surgery such as a dry socket, bleeding, numbness, and infections, though risk levels are very low since an extraction of wisdom teeth is quite similar to a standard extraction procedure. However, most dentists state that risks are higher for wisdom tooth extraction from the lower jaw.

4. What Comes After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

Wisdom tooth extraction is not an instant procedure you can just have done anytime you wish. It has to be planned and scheduled. Though the extraction itself won’t take too long, remember that an extraction always requires time to heal, and some people’s gums tend to heal more slowly than others’. The extent of bleeding is also different in each case.

After the surgery, expect pain and swelling in the area where the tooth was extracted from. Bleeding is normal until 24 hours after surgery. You may at first have difficulty opening your jaw, and may experience numbness as a result of the anesthetic.

What to Do After the Extraction

Wisdom tooth extraction is not to be taken lightly. After the surgery, you have to take care not to irritate or place impact or trauma on the area where the tooth was taken from. Change your gauze pad regularly within the first 24 hours, after which the bleeding is expected to stop. Avoid lying flat without pillows to make the bleeding stop faster.

You should also avoid using a straw for drinking for at least a few days after the surgery, and avoid hard food as well. Do not engage in active physical activity until after the wound has healed so as to prevent further bleeding.

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