Wisdom Teeth

If you’re over the age of about 15, then you might begin to notice a pain in the back of the mouth on the upper and lower jaws. This is often an indication that the wisdom teeth are trying to come through.

Not everyone has the same kind of pain associated with the teeth, and there are some who might not have any kind of symptoms at all and have the teeth come through without any issues.

There are a few signs that you will notice when the teeth begin to come through the gums. At times, the wisdom teeth might not come in straight and grow under the back teeth. In some people, the teeth might not be able to come through the gums at all and become impacted. This can sometimes cause an infection or severe pain as the teeth are cramped in the gums with the roots of the back teeth beside them.

Signs and Symptoms

The pain that you feel might come on suddenly, or it might gradually increase over a period of time. You can sometimes use an analgesic gel on the gums to relieve the pain or take a pain reliever, such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen. If there is a significant amount of pain from the teeth, you should talk to your dentist or an oral surgeon to see if the teeth can be removed.

As the teeth begin to come through the gums, there will be an opportunity for bacteria to enter the gums. This can cause bad breath and an abscess to form if the teeth don’t break through all the way. If you don’t get the teeth removed, the roots will continue to grow and elongate, which can make it difficult to remove them in a manner other than getting them cut out. When bacteria sets up, you might notice that there is a change in the way that foods taste and a foul taste in the mouth. There will likely be swelling along the gum line that can sometimes be noticed from the outside of the mouth as the jawline and the cheeks will become swollen as well.

Removing the Wisdom Teeth

Getting the teeth removed by letting a dentist pull them or an oral surgeon cut them out of the gums is the only way to alleviate the pain and any infection that is present. If the dentist removes the teeth, then a small device is placed around each tooth. The dentist will numb the mouth before the teeth are pulled. Each tooth is wiggled in order to be able to lift it from gums.

If an oral surgeon removes the wisdom teeth, you will usually be put to sleep with an IV medication. Some surgeons will only give you enough medication so that you’re sedated instead of being completely asleep. Once you are settled in the procedure area and unaware of what is taking place, the surgeon will begin to cut the tissue of the gums before removing the wisdom teeth. Bone that is covering the tooth will also be removed. If the tooth is hard to reach, then the surgeon might have to cut the tooth into pieces to make it easier to take out. Stitches will be used to close the area. They will likely dissolve after a few days, but some sutures will need to be removed by the dentist.

After Surgery

When you get home, it’s important that you eat soft foods. Take any medications for pain that are prescribed. An ice pack can help to relieve swelling. Don’t use a straw as it can loosen any blood clots that form. Your dentist will want to see you after a few days to make sure your mouth is healing properly. You can rinse your mouth with warm salt water to help with the healing process, and it can also help to relieve pain and swelling.