Do I need my wisdom teeth removed?

We’ve all seen the funny videos on YouTube of people saying and doing crazy things thanks to the anesthesia after getting wisdom teeth removed. Wisdom teeth removal is a common procedure, but many people wonder if they need to have them removed even if they don’t feel any pain.

What are Wisdom Teeth?

Baby teeth and the majority of adult teeth come in over a period of years in early- to mid-childhood. Wisdom are late bloomers and don’t usually emerge until 17-25. You’re older and wiser, thus the name wisdom teeth.

It is believed the teeth came about because of our ancestors need to chew rough food, but as civilization evolved, so did the softness of our food. Scientists now consider wisdom teeth vestigial just like the appendix.

Why Are They Removed?

There are many reasons why the wisdom teeth are removed even when they’re not causing pain. Dentists can see how the teeth come in via X-rays and while they might not be an issue now, they could cause serious problems once they break through.

Many times a person’s mouth isn’t large enough to accommodate the teeth, so they come in under other teeth or at an angle that could impact other teeth. When the teeth come in at an odd angle, then it can be difficult to clean the area and it can lead to tooth decay. Once they pop through, the can rub against other teeth and cause problems.

Wisdom Tooth Extraction

The process starts with the dentist explaining to you the reasoning for the removal and asks about any health problems, current medications, etc. You’ll schedule the surgery and you should plan for any childcare needs, a ride to and from the dentist, time off from work and recovery time. While the procedure is only about an hour long, you won’t be going back to work that day.

On the day of the surgery, the dentist numbs the area and provides general anesthetic to minimize the pain. Depending on the orientation of the wisdom teeth, the dentist will need to cut through gum and bone. He’ll stitch up the cuts will likely apply gauze to help soak up blood.

After surgery, you’ll have swelling in the area of the surgery. You can use OTC medications and ice packs to help reduce swelling. Avoid eating hard or crunchy foods and be careful not to injure the blood clots in your mouth.

For a Lifetime of smiles can help you learn more about wisdom tooth detraction, so contact us today for information or to set up an appointment.