Wisdom Teeth Removal
Getting wisdom teeth removed is important for the overall health of your teeth and gums.
What is it?
Many people have problems with their wisdom teeth and need to get them removed. Wisdom teeth extraction is a common dental procedure. Wisdom teeth can often be removed at a general dental practice but in some instances, wisdom teeth need to be removed by a specialist.
If your wisdom teeth have become impacted or stuck under your gum, there can be further issues that could be prevented by timely removal of your wisdom teeth. These include:
- Infection in the gum flap on top of the tooth
- Decay in the wisdom teeth
- Damage to the surrounding teeth
- A cyst that can threaten the health of the surrounding bone
When you visit the dentist, they will assess your wisdom teeth and the options for removing them.
You need to know
- At least 2 appointments
- At the first consultation visit your dentist will listen to your needs, examine your teeth and discuss the options with you
- Usually you would have your wisdom teeth removed at your next appointment
How long does it take?
This depends on the removal procedure and where it is done.
- In a general dental practice, the extraction will usually take around 30 to 60 minutes
- At oral surgery clinics it will usually take around 45 to 90 minutes
- For extraction under general anaesthetic at the hospital you will usually be at the hospital for around 2 to 3 hours
You may be asked about
- Your dental history and medical history
- Your symptoms
- Your sedation preferences
Before your appointment
For the consultation you will not need any special preparation, but you should have knowledge on hand about your dental and medical history.
Before surgery oral sedation you should:
- Follow the pre-sedation protocol given to you by your dentist
- Take pre-operative medication at the time prescribed
- Wear something warm and comfortable with loose sleeves
- Ensure you have someone pick you up from your appointment and accompany you home
After your appointment
- Use ice packs as much as possible to prevent swelling during the first 48 hours
- Don’t rinse your mouth out on the day of the surgery as it will cause bleeding
- Don’t smoke for as long as possible after surgery
- Be careful with hot food and drinks
- Eat a soft food diet
- On the day after the removal, rinse three times a day after meals with warm, salty water
If you have had surgery under sedation, you must:
- Be accompanied home
- Rest for around 2 to 4 hours following surgery
- Not drive or operate machinery until the following day
It’s normal to experience some swelling and discomfort following wisdom teeth removal. It’s also normal to experience some bleeding or slight oozing from the wounds after the extraction. Your dentist will give you gauze to help control the bleeding.