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- Patient Comments: Wisdom Teeth - Removal Complications
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- What are wisdom teeth?
- How do I know if I have wisdom teeth?
- Do all wisdom teeth need to be extracted?
- What if the wisdom teeth hurt and they cannot be extracted right away?
- How is wisdom tooth extraction performed?
- What is the recovery like after wisdom teeth extraction?
- What are the potential risks and complications of wisdom teeth extraction?
- How much does wisdom teeth extraction cost?
What if the wisdom teeth hurt and they cannot be extracted right away?
If there is swelling, infection, difficulty swallowing or breathing, fever, or intense pain, priority needs to be given to getting the wisdom teeth out as soon as possible. Antibiotics may be prescribed to help keep an infection from getting worse or spreading for a very short while. Warm saltwater rinse or antibacterial mouth rinse and OTC painkillers can be used as short-term remedies for tooth pain until more definitive treatment can be obtained.
How is wisdom tooth extraction performed?
Once it has been determined that a wisdom tooth is problematic, extraction by an oral surgeon or qualified general dentist is usually indicated. Local anesthesia is administered to ensure the tooth can be pulled out without any discomfort. Many people will choose conscious sedation (being put into a sleepy state where pain signals are blocked) so they have little or no memory of having the wisdom teeth extracted. A minor surgery is then performed where the tissue and bone around the wisdom tooth are removed so that the tooth can be cleanly extracted from the socket. Several stitches may be needed to close the surgical site and promote healing of the overlying tissue.
What is the recovery like after wisdom teeth extraction?
The initial recovery and healing from wisdom tooth extraction usually occurs over about three to five days. It is normal to have slight bleeding (oozing) from the site considering the surgical procedure performed. The minor bleeding (oozing) after extraction should start to ease after the first 24 hours. Pain medication is often prescribed to help with any postoperative symptoms and discomfort. Usually, Tylenol, an ice pack and a mild narcotic is enough to provide pain relief. Some patients may be prescribed antibiotics. The patient will be asked to eat soft foods for a few days and avoid spicy foods, tobacco and alcohol use, and excessive exercise. The best remedies for pain following extraction are rest and giving the area time to heal. Adhering to the postoperative instructions of the surgeon is important to minimize any complications. Complete healing of the gums may take three to four weeks.