Wisdom tooth removal
Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, are the last teeth to emerge in the back of the mouth, usually between the ages of 17 and 25. However, for many people, there isn’t enough space in their mouth for these teeth to grow properly, causing pain, infections, or damage to adjacent teeth. Therefore, wisdom tooth removal may be necessary.
No, not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed. Some people’s wisdom teeth grow in normally and don’t cause any problems, while others may experience pain, infection, or damage to adjacent teeth if their wisdom teeth don’t have enough space to grow properly. Therefore, the decision to remove wisdom teeth depends on each individual’s unique circumstances and dental health.
Generally, wisdom teeth removal is recommended if the teeth are impacted, meaning they are partially or fully trapped beneath the gum tissue and can’t emerge properly. This can lead to a range of dental problems, including infection, decay, and damage to adjacent teeth or bone. In some cases, wisdom teeth may be partially erupted, meaning they have only emerged partially from the gum tissue, which can also cause issues.
If the teeth are healthy, fully erupted, and properly positioned, they may not cause any issues and can be left in place. In some cases, the dentist may recommend monitoring the teeth closely and removing them only if problems arise in the future.
Ultimately, the decision to remove wisdom teeth should be made on a case-by-case basis, based on a thorough dental examination and evaluation of the individual’s overall dental health and risk factors. Your dentist can discuss the pros and cons of wisdom tooth removal with you and help you make an informed decision based on your unique circumstances.
The procedure is usually performed under local anesthesia which totally numbs the teeth and surrounding gums so you shouldn’t feel any pain during the removal.
However, it is normal to experience discomfort and swelling for about 3-5 days afterwards. This is a normal part of the healing process and is managed with pain medications and antibiotics that we provide for you. Applying ice packs and eating soft foods can help alleviate discomfort. It’s important to follow the postoperative instructions carefully and attend any follow-up appointments to ensure proper healing and prevent complications.
For very anxious patients, we do provide the option of intravenous sedation. A qualified medical anaesthetist will be arranged to come on the day of the surgery to put you to sleep. During the procedure, the patient’s vital signs, including blood pressure, heart rate, and oxygen levels, are monitored closely to ensure their safety and comfort. The sedation wears off gradually after the procedure, and the patient may feel drowsy or groggy for several hours afterward. You will need someone to accompany you home after the procedure for safety reasons.
It is important to note that this is not a general anaesthetic, which takes place in a hospital and requires machines to maintain your body’s essential functions such as breathing.
Sedation is a much more low risk procedure that allows you to ‘sleep’ throughout the entire surgery.