Wisdom teeth are your third molar and the last four permanent adult teeth that emerge in your mouth. They appear on the top and bottom sides of the jaw, usually at ages 17 and 21. However, not everyone has much space in their mouth to contain these wisdom teeth without affecting other teeth, thus creating several problems for your mouth and overall health.
If this happens, your dentist will likely recommend surgery to get rid of them. Wisdom teeth removal is fast becoming popular, and recovery can take about a week, depending on your particular case. Recovery may take longer when your wisdom teeth are impacted in your jawbone or under the gum and are still invisible at the time of surgery.
What happens before wisdom teeth extraction?
Before scheduling your surgery, your dentist will first refer you to an oral surgeon for a consultation. During this visit, the health of your wisdom teeth will be assessed, and dental X-rays will be taken to determine their exact location. Also, they’ll inform you of the sedation option and discuss which one you prefer. It’ll help if you tell your surgeon about any medications, vitamins, or supplements you’re currently taking. It is also a great time to ask any questions about the procedure.
What happens during wisdom teeth removal?
Wisdom teeth is an outpatient surgery, meaning you arrive and leave the surgery center the same day. Usually, extracting wisdom teeth takes about an hour or less. However, for a more complex case, it might take longer.
You’ll be given sedation medication on the day of the surgery, and your surgeon will also administer local anesthesia to help numb the teeth and gums. Impacted wisdom teeth will be exposed with incisions, giving your surgeon adequate access. Once the teeth are visible, your oral surgeon will carefully loosen and lift them from their sockets, the area will be cleaned, and stitches will be placed there.
Everyone reacts differently to anesthesia. If you had a local anesthetic and felt alert, you might be able to drive home on your own. You might even be able to return to your regular daily routine. However, you’ll be advised to come along with someone just in case you get general anesthesia and can’t drive back.
Most people have very little to no pain after surgery. Swelling and mild discomfort are likely to occur for 3 to 4 days. If your mouth was impacted, it could take a week to recover. For a quicker recovery, follow your doctor’s instructions. Here is some guidance to help speed up your recovery process:
Use an ice pack on the swollen part of your face to control swelling
Eat very soft foods like pasta, rice, or soup.
Drink plenty of water.
Brush your teeth, starting the second day. Avoid brushing against any blood clots.
Take the drugs given to you by your doctor to reduce swelling or pain.
Phone your doctor if you have a fever or if your pain or swelling doesn’t subside after a few days.
Extracting your wisdom teeth is essential to fix or prevent problems with your last molars. You can return to your everyday life after the surgery; recovery often takes a few days or a week. You may want to follow your doctor’s instructions to the latter for a better and speedy recovery.