Also known as the third set of molars, the wisdom teeth are the last set of teeth in the mouth to erupt, which normally happens around the ages of 17 - 25. For many years, there has been a lot of controversy as to the need to remove these teeth. If the teeth don't cause any harm or pain, they are normally fine to stay in place. If they present a bad position or cause you a lot of pain or discomfort, they will need to be removed.
When the wisdom teeth first come in, they will sometimes be impacted. Impacted teeth will normally need to be extracted. Sometimes they can be pulled, although in most cases they need to be cut out by a qualified surgeon. When the time comes to have your wisdom teeth extracted, you"ll need to go to an oral surgeon and have a consultation first.
During the consultation, you"ll take a few x-rays that will let the surgeon know how bad your wisdom teeth are. He will go over the results with you, take a look in your mouth, then tell you what options you have. If he is going to pull or cut out your teeth, you"ll have the option of using local anaesthesia or going with an IV sedation. An IV sedation is the preferred way to have wisdom teeth extracted, as you"ll be so relaxed you won't know what is going on. If you decide to just use local anaesthesia, which is numbing, you"ll be fully aware of the procedure. You"ll also hear the popping and cracking involved, which can make you feel quite uncomfortable.
Depending on the shape, size, and the formation of the wisdom teeth, the removal process can vary from easy to hard. If the root tips have managed to wrap themselves around the bone, the removal process can be very time consuming and quite painful. Once the extractions have been completed, there is normally little to no swelling involved. Your dentist will prescribe you some pain medicine, which you should use as soon as you arrive home. If you are going to use IV sedation, you"ll need to someone to accompany you, as you won't be able to drive home.
After the removal of your wisdom teeth, your dentist will go over what you need to do to ensure the proper healing of your gums and mouth. Normally, he will give you information to go over, to make sure that you experience no problems in the healing process. Someone will need to be with you for the first 24 hours, to make sure that you ok. You won't be able to eat certain foods for the first 48 hours, which is to be expected. Once you get your wisdom teeth removed through - you"ll notice a big improvement in your mouth - and your health.