The wisdom teeth, also known as the third molars, develop during early adulthood, most often between the ages of 15 and 25. Most mouths are too small to support these additional molars, making an extraction procedure necessary. If not removed, the wisdom teeth may cause pain, infection and swelling of the face or gum line, as well as the development of cysts and tumors.
The Wisdom Teeth Extraction Procedure
Before the wisdom tooth extraction, the dentist will administer local anesthesia. If several or all of the wisdom teeth will be removed simultaneously, a general anesthetic may be used.
After the anesthetic is administered, the gum tissue over the tooth will be opened to remove any bone that covers the tooth. The connecting tissue is then separated so that the entire tooth can be removed. The area is sutured closed and covered with gauze to control bleeding.
Recovery From Wisdom Teeth Extraction
After surgery, patients will be prescribed painkillers to speed up the recovery process and reduce pain. Patients should eat only soft foods and liquids for the first few days and gently rinse their mouth with warm salt water to relieve swelling and pain. Stitches, if needed, are removed within a few days.
Complications of Wisdom Teeth Extraction
If the post operative instructions received from the dentist are not followed, patients may increase the risk of:
- Prolonged pain and swelling
- Dry socket
- Damage to existing dental work
- Pain when opening the jaw
These side effects can be serious and may require additional treatment.
In general, wisdom teeth extraction is considered safe and beneficial for most patients.
What Will Happen If I Leave My Wisdom Teeth In?
If there is currently no issue with your wisdom teeth, then you will not have to worry about needing to remove them. However, if you start experiencing pain or discomfort, it could be because of your wisdom teeth. Impacted wisdom teeth, in particular, can cause a whole slew of issues.
Without treatment, it could lead to an infection, which can then form into a cyst. A cyst is a sac of fluid, which usually includes pus. When a cyst forms, it could add more pressure to your teeth and bone tissue.
Other dental problems that can be caused by wisdom teeth include the following:
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
- Overcrowding of the teeth
- Damage to your other teeth
- Difficulty with chewing
- Chronic bad breath
Again, these only occur if your wisdom teeth are impacted. In order to know if your wisdom teeth are impacted, you will need to see a dentist or an orthodontist. Dr. Husam Elias will assess the current state of your teeth during your consultation with him.
Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed Before Orthodontic Surgery?
Whether or not your wisdom teeth need to be removed before another dental operation depends on the degree of impaction, if they are causing pain, and, in some cases, if they have become infected. For example, upper wisdom teeth can become impacted into the sinus cavity, which can be extremely painful. If you intend to receive braces or aligners in the future, most orthodontists suggest having your wisdom teeth removed first to prevent future crowding or misalignment.
Is The Wisdom Tooth Extraction Procedure Painful?
In most cases, wisdom tooth extraction is not painful. Patients can have a topical anesthetic applied as well as Novocain. In some cases, patients might prefer to be given laughing gas or go under general anesthesia. However, this depends on the patient’s needs and overall health.
Contact Us Today
If you are suffering from impacted wisdom teeth, then Dr. Husam Elias is here to help. He sees patients at our offices in Sherman Oaks and Pasadena, CA. We are easy to reach from Los Angeles, Encino, and the San Fernando Valley. Contact us at 626-440-0099 to schedule an appointment today!