The team at City Dentists are very experienced at dealing with problematic wisdom teeth. Wisdom teeth (third molars) generally cause problems when there is not enough room in the jaw for them to erupt into the mouth like the rest of the adult teeth have. Often they get stuck (impacted) under the back end of the second molars and this can cause a number of different issues as outlined below.
- Infection: If the wisdom teeth have partially erupted food and bacteria can get stuck under the gums surrounding them. This area is very hard to clean and the bacteria can cause an infection, which makes the gums around the wisdom tooth red, swollen and painful. In severe situations an abscess can form. If you feel pain in the area of your wisdom teeth you should contact us immediately to arrange an appointment to assess them so we can limit the severity of any infection.
- Decay and periodontal (Gum) infection: Again as the wisdom teeth are hard to clean they are more prone to getting decay or gum disease. Often wisdom teeth with these problems need to be removed, as they cannot be fixed due to their impacted or partially erupted position. Also there is the risk that these processes can cause damage to the teeth in front of the wisdom teeth.
- Cysts: Occasionally wisdom teeth that haven’t erupted can have cysts or tumours form around them.
- Weakened Jawbones: Occasionally people need their lower wisdom teeth removed because the length of the roots makes a weak spot in the lower jaw (mandible). This weak spot can make the jaw bone much more prone to breaking (fracturing).
How are wisdom teeth removed?
Due to their position the wisdom teeth are often hard to extract and need to be surgically removed. First a local anaesthetic is given to totally numb the area. City Dentists also offers intravenous sedation (Sedation Dentistry), which is very useful for relaxing patients that are having their wisdom teeth removed. If the wisdom tooth is not fully erupted you may need a small incision of the gums to allow access to the tooth. Then the tooth may need to be cut into sections to allow it to be taken out without damaging the adjacent teeth. Sometimes this will involve removing small amounts of the jaw bone to remove the roots. Once the wisdom tooth is removed the gums are then stitched (sutured) back into place to allow the area to heal.
How will it feel afterwards?
The surgical removal of wisdom teeth can cause more discomfort than routine extractions. You may experience some swelling, bruising and minor bleeding. Often it can be difficult to open your mouth due to this swelling. All these symptoms are temporary and will subside as healing occurs.
Do you think you may need your wisdom teeth removed? Call us now to organise a consultation to assess your wisdom teeth on (04) 978 4964 or email us.