Should I have my wisdom teeth taken out?
Wisdom teeth can become a nuisance to live with – they grow at the back of your gums and come from the very back. Most people have four wisdom teeth, one in each corner of the mouth. They will usually come in when all the other teeth have fallen out and been replaced. Most people will have theirs come between 17 and 21, however in some cases they can erupt at a much later age.
What is the purpose of wisdom teeth?
Thousands of years ago, when we were still cave people we had our wisdom teeth to allow us to eat much tougher food. Back then our jaws were in fact wide and so could accommodate the extra teeth – today we have much smaller jaws and so the development of wisdom teeth can cause issues.
How can I tell if it’s my wisdom teeth that have come through?
Some people’s wisdom teeth come through with no issues at all. For others they experience some mild discomfort or periods of pain. Luckily for most people once the teeth are through the pain stops. Signs your wisdom’s are coming through are: Lingering pain, pressure in the back jaw or gum swelling, sensitivity or bleeding. If you experience any of these symptoms you should visit your dentist in Stevenage to check what’s going on.
Why would I have my wisdom teeth removed?
Hopefully you won’t need to have your wisdom teeth removed as it can be a difficult procedure. Some wisdom teeth can become impacted – this is when the tooth has become stuck underneath the gum or has only partially broken through the gums, or sometimes they grow on the wrong angle and cause food to get stuck in the mouth. When food and bacteria gets stuck in the gum/tooth line there can be a build up of plaque which can then cause a variety of issues including: tooth decay, gum disease, pericoronitis, cellulitis and abscess. A lot of these issues can be treated by antibiotics, however if the issues keep happening you might need to have a wisdom tooth removed.
What does having your wisdom tooth removed involve?
Often your dentist can remove your wisdom tooth but in some cases it may involve a trip to the hospital. You will likely be given a local anesthetic injection to numb the area surrounding the wisdom tooth. You will likely feel some pressure but shouldn’t be in too much pain. In some cases a small cut in the gum will have to be made and the tooth may need to be cut smaller too. In general the procedure should take about 20 minutes but your dentist in Stevenage will have more of an idea of complication and timing based on your individual case.
Post removal you may have some swelling and discomfort both internally and externally but you should see that reduce quickly. If you are worried about any side effects post surgery, you should contact the dentist, unless you are in immediate danger, in which case visit the hospital or call either 999 or 101.