Dr. Sang from Polished Dental has written a great article about five wisdom teeth facts – things you need to know about your wisdom teeth. When do they erupt? Do you always need to remove wisdom teeth? Let’s take a look.
5 Wisdom Teeth Facts – Polished Dental
1. When can I expect my wisdom teeth?
Your wisdom teeth will usually erupt from ~17-23. Of course there are exemptions and we have had patients as young as 14 and as late as 39, so feel free to book in with the team if you have any questions about this or are concerned. You’ll know when the wisdom teeth are coming via soreness (and sometimes swelling) in the gums behind your last teeth.
2. What do I do when my wisdom teeth erupt?
Book in for an examination, where your clinic will do a visual examination and take some x-rays (sometimes you’ll be referred somewhere for a whole mouth x-ray). We need to have a look how close to the nerve your wisdom teeth are and see how many roots there are, and if they have an angle or kink.
3. What’s usually done about wisdom teeth?
There are a few options. They don’t always have to be removed!
– If erupting, there is enough space for them and you can keep them clean enough – we recommend keeping the teeth to chew with. We strongly encourage you come back for routine checkups
-If they’re unerupted we have a similar situation – sometimes they’re okay to leave there but you’ll need to ensure regular checkups to make sure everything’s okay!
-Sometimes wisdom teeth need to be removed so you’re safer in the long term.
4. How do we remove the wisdom teeth?
This depends on factors which can complicate the process:
- Difficult access
- Difficult tooth anatomy
- Surrounding nerves and sinuses causing difficult anatomy.
- Hard or older bone around wisdom teeth
This can be done under general anaesthetic at a hospital for day surgery – generally for difficult patients or anxious patients.
Most wisdom teeth extractions occur at an everyday dental clinic just like Polished Dental – we will guide you as to which type is right for you.
At the clinic, it’s a simple process as we plan thoroughly for your extraction – we use local anaesthetic so you don’t feel any pain (sometimes a light sensation).
If you haven’t been sedated for the procedure (most people aren’t) you will be able to drive home. We do recommend to have someone with you if possible.
5. What do I do after?
The first two to three days will generally result in some discomfort and swelling for 2-3 days afterwards. Some much milder discomfort can continue for 2-3 weeks – most people are back at work after a day or two. We recommend a soft diet in the first 2-3 days (e.g. scrambled eggs, custard). Warm salt water rinses also help keep the site clean.
Paracetamol (Panadol) or ibuprofen (Nurofen) can be used as pain relief. We will tailor an individual plan for patients to ensure know how best look after the healing area for them.