The wisdom teeth are your last teeth to develop. They emerge in the back of your mouth, around the time your jaw stops growing. As a result, your mouth’s structure may not have enough room to support these new molars.
Wisdom teeth often become impacted beneath the gumline and can’t poke up through the gum without irritating surrounding nerves, soft tissue, and teeth. Impacted wisdom teeth cause pain, abscesses, and infection. If your wisdom teeth are impacted, they must be extracted.
Even if your wisdom teeth aren’t impacted, they can cause complications in your bite and oral comfort. Sometimes the wisdom teeth break only part way through your gums and a flap of tissue grows over them. Food and bacteria get trapped under this flap, leading to infection.
Wisdom teeth can also come in at an awkward angle — facing forward, backward, or to either side.
During extraction, the team at Los Gatos Dental Specialists gives you a local anesthetic to alleviate any discomfort. If you have impacted teeth or other complications, your dentist may recommend IV conscious sedation to help you relax and block pain during the procedure.
Once you’re adequately sedated or numb, your dentist opens up the gum tissue covering the wisdom teeth and removes any bone that’s in the way. The tooth/teeth may need to be broken up into smaller pieces to make removal easier.
Once the extraction is complete, the doctor closes the wounds with dissolvable stitches and packs the area with gauze to minimize bleeding. How long your extraction takes depends on the severity of the impaction.
You can expect to have some pain and swelling for a few days. The team prescribes pain medications and antibiotics to reduce any chance of infection. You also receive comprehensive aftercare instructions to help you with hygiene and diet for the week or two after extraction.
Call Los Gatos Dental Specialists today to set up an appointment and have your wisdom teeth evaluated. Alternatively, use this website to schedule your consultation.