You may have negative ideas about wisdom teeth because of what you’ve heard or stories about their removal. Chances are, you know someone in the Centennial and Aurora area who has had their wisdom teeth removed, and you have seen them with their cheeks swollen afterward. Some patients say they don’t want to go through the process of wisdom teeth removal, but once your wisdom teeth start becoming painful, removal seems like a much better option. When that time comes, you should call Dr. Austin Ivey for a consultation.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are usually the last ones to develop in your mouth and are located in the very back, behind your second molars. These are technically called third molars but got the name “wisdom teeth” because they develop in the middle teenage years and early twenties when people are said to begin attaining wisdom.
Watch our 3D animation video to learn more about wisdom teeth.
Issues With Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth are generally more problematic than they are functional. Some of the main issues impacted wisdom teeth can cause include:
Damage to adjacent teeth
Symptoms That Indicate Wisdom Teeth Are Erupting
Wisdom teeth are typically the last adult teeth to emerge in the mouth. For some, they appear in the late teenage years; for others, they never arise at all. If your wisdom teeth do erupt, they may cause complications. We recommend being aware of the signs and symptoms and seeking treatment sooner rather than later.
Some common signs of wisdom teeth erupting include:
Bleeding and Tenderness
As wisdom teeth erupt, they may cause your gums to bleed or become tender to the touch. Be alert for these symptoms at the back of your mouth.
Pain or Swelling of the Jaw
The eruption of wisdom teeth may also leave your jaw feeling sore. If you have jaw pain that persists for more than a couple of days, it is time to seek care.
An Unpleasant Taste
Another common symptom of wisdom teeth erupting is a persistent bad taste in your mouth, leading to bad breath. Be alert to these symptoms.
If wisdom teeth become impacted, it can cause a buildup of pressure, and this, in turn, may lead to triggered headaches. This symptom may be hard to detect for those who already struggle with headaches.
As wisdom teeth erupt, they often do so at an odd angle. This can contribute to small openings in the gums, which become magnets for bacteria and, ultimately infection.
Difficulty Opening Your Mouth
Sometimes, the soreness caused by wisdom teeth can be so extreme that it becomes difficult to open your mouth all the way. This is a sure reason to seek care.
Do Your Wisdom Teeth Have To Be Removed?
Some people keep their wisdom teeth forever. It is a big risk to do so, but rarely do wisdom teeth erupt without causing problems. However, when your mouth doesn’t have enough room for four wisdom teeth to grow properly, their removal may be your only option.
The main reason why leaving your wisdom teeth in is risky is because there is always a chance for them to become problematic later in life. Even if your wisdom teeth don’t cause problems early in your life, the risks of issues increase in your adult years. Waiting this long gives the wisdom teeth time to develop stronger roots, which will make the removal procedure more difficult, and the recovery time will be more extensive. For this reason, most patients choose to remove their wisdom teeth before problems arise. Dr. Ivey does not pressure his patients to undergo any procedure that they are not comfortable with – it is always up to the patient to decide what is right for them.
Our Approach to Wisdom Teeth Removal
If you’ve decided to have your wisdom teeth removed by Dr. Ivey and his team, rest assured that they are dedicated to making your experience best as possible. We’ll provide you with the right amount of anesthesia to help you get through the process without feeling any amount of pain. Also, medication will likely be prescribed for you to take afterward to reduce any post-surgery discomfort.
We know the primary way to reduce our patient’s anxiety is to make them feel comfortable and confident about their wisdom teeth removal surgery. For this reason, we want to be sure that all of your questions have been thoroughly answered before we schedule your wisdom teeth extraction appointment. Dr. Ivey will take the time to answer all your questions during your consultation so that you can make an informed decision. Once you arrive on the day of surgery, our friendly team will make sure you are entirely at ease and relaxed before we proceed.
Wisdom teeth removal typically takes about an hour, but plan on being in our office for 90 minutes from start to finish. Dr. Ivey uses only the latest technology so that his patients have a quick recovery and minimal post-surgery discomfort.
Wisdom Teeth Removal Recovery
Some patients recover from their wisdom teeth removal within a day or two; for others, it may take as long as two weeks. The first day of recovery is the most important, as blood clots will form and prevent you from a common complication called dry socket. Then, within three to five days, most patients should find that the swelling in their mouth has improved considerably.
To ensure an expedient recovery, be careful not to dislodge blood clots. And try to keep your head elevated as much as possible for the first few days. Until you feel comfortable eating solid foods, we recommend protein-rich liquids and “soft” foods.
Don’t Overdo It Following Surgery
Take it easy for 3-5 days following surgery because you don’t want to risk running into any complications by overworking yourself. Take advantage of the opportunity to sit around, watch television and eat ice cream. The more comfortable you are, the easier your recovery will be.
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You’re in Good Hands with Dr. Ivey
Dr. Ivey and his team want to ensure you are comfortable and confident about our entire process. When you schedule a consultation with us, we’ll show you a brief video to demonstrate how the wisdom teeth removal procedure will work, and then discuss an overall plan of action for you. Pricing, the timeline, and any other concerns will be addressed thoroughly and transparently before the actual procedure is scheduled.
Ivey Oral & Facial Surgery serves patients in the Centennial and Aurora, CO areas. If you have wisdom teeth and aren’t sure if they need to be extracted, schedule a consultation today by calling or texting (303) 493-1933.