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Wisdom Teeth Removal

About Wisdom Teeth Removal

The four ‘third molars,’ also called wisdom teeth, are the last to erupt within the mouth, during early adulthood. 

Unfortunately, wisdom teeth often do not align properly, and this makes extraction necessary. Wisdom teeth may grow sideways, only partially emerge, or be impacted. 

This can cause many problems, including pain, infection, and alignment of other teeth and damage to the jawbone and other teeth. 

Removal of the impacted teeth usually resolves these problems. It should be done as early as possible, to avoid future problems.

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What is the procedure for wisdom teeth extraction?

During wisdom tooth extraction, your surgeon will cut into the gum, and remove bone to access the root of the tooth. The tooth itself may be easier to remove in sections. The surgeon will remove the tooth, clean the site and may then close the wound with sutures if necessary. A gauze dressing over the wound will help stop bleeding and allow a blood clot to form.

How should I prepare for the procedure?

Before your surgery you may be asked to stop smoking for 2 – 4 weeks prior to the procedure.  Nicotine retards the healing process, and quitting for as long as possible before surgery helps improve blood flow.

You will also have to have a blood test before surgery is performed.

You should stop taking certain medication, like aspirin and some anti-inflammatory drugs.  Avoid recreational drugs and disclose to your surgeon any other medication you’re taking, since you may need to adjust these. 

Be sure to arrange for transport to and from the clinic since you may not be able to drive yourself after the procedure.

After a wisdom tooth extraction, you may go home the same day.

Where will the procedure be performed?

The surgery will be performed either in the dental surgeon’s chair or in one of our fully equipped operating theatres, if your tooth is deeply impacted or if the extraction is more complex. 

What anaesthetic is used for wisdom teeth extraction?

Your surgeon will probably use a local anesthetic and may also suggest sedation to make the procedure more comfortable.

How do I recover from the procedure?

Most people will have some discomfort and swelling for about three days and complete recovery will take a few weeks.

Your surgeon may prescribe medication to ease pain or swelling.

and will give you advice on recovery, including what food or liquids you may consume.

You can apply an ice pack to help reduce swelling. You should eat only soft foods and gently move your jaw. You can brush your teeth on the second day but avoid the extraction site. Rinse your mouth gently with salt water. Avoid smoking, hot drinks and don’t use a drinking straw.

When can I return to normal activities?

You will probably not need to take more than a day or two off work after having a wisdom tooth removed, after which you can resume normal activities.

What risks are involved in wisdom teeth extraction?

As with any surgery, there are some risks, which include bleeding, infection as well as the general risks associated with anaesthesia. Complications can also include delayed healing (often a result of smoking  during recovery) and a painful “dry socket” which can occur when the post-surgical blood clot is lost.