When is extraction of wisdom teeth not necessary?
If the wisdom teeth are:
- Hale and healthy
- Fully grown into the regular shape
- If they are positioned properly and don’t interrupt the biting process
- If they are easily reachable by the bristles while brushing
- And most importantly, if the wisdom teeth don’t cause any pain
When is extraction of wisdom tooth really needed?
- If the wisdom teeth fail to erupt completely
- If they are positioned in a weird manner, like sideways, protruding into the next tooth, etc
- If the food articles are getting trapped around the wisdom tooth, causing infection in that area
- If you’re not able to brush the wisdom tooth properly, it’s better to get rid of it to avoid bad odor from the tooth.
Understanding the wisdom tooth removal procedure:
Step 1: As part of a routine oral check up or a visit to the dentist to diagnose the cause of tooth ache you may end up taking an OPG or panoramic X-ray of the entire mouth or the area where pain is experienced.
Step 2: The dentist will decide if a surgery is required. In case you are not free to have one immediately he may prescribe some antibiotics to give immediate relief and may post pone the surgery.
Step 3: Upon deciding a surgery, depending on the severity and the no. of wisdom teeth to be extracted the dentist will decide on whether to inject a local or a general anesthesia to create numbness. In case, more than one tooth needs to be extracted at the same time the patient is given a general anesthesia. In such a case a prior notice will be given to keep your stomach empty for at least 12 hours before the surgery so as to keep the anesthesia effective throughout the surgery. In case a local anesthesia is given the dentist may inject an additional sedative with the consent of the patient to control the anxiety during the surgery. Nitrous oxide or intravenous sedatives are commonly given.
Step 4: The tissue surrounding the wisdom tooth is opened up.
Step 5: The bone supporting the tooth is lifted. The tissue that connects the tooth and the bone is separated and the tooth is plucked out gently. The tooth may be crushed to small pieces if it makes the extraction easy.
Step 6: On removal of the tooth the depression caused by extraction is covered up and stitched. These days’ dissolvable threads are used for stitching purposes. In case the conventional thread is used another visit is necessary to remove the stitches.
Step 7: A small gauzed cotton swab is placed on the operated area to stop the bleeding.
How long does the whole process of extraction take?
If the surgery involves removal of fully erupted wisdom tooth in the upper jaw, ideally it should take around 35 min depending on the experience of the operating dentist. In case of extraction of tooth in the lower jaw it might take slightly longer.
In case of an impact tooth it takes longer because the bone enveloping the tooth needs to be opened up first. This should take around 45 min to one hour.
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