Wisdom teeth, or the third molars, are the last permanent teeth that grow out. This occurs between age 16 and 18. These mature by age 25 and, at that time, become well-rooted in the gums.

Whether you need wisdom teeth removal in Austin is a decision that varies from individual to individual. Wisdom teeth might become impacted wisdom teeth and can cause some dental problems. For others, the teeth are completely healthy and don’t need extraction at all.

What are Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

woman holding cheekImpacted wisdom teeth fail to grow in their natural position. They either become enclosed within the soft tissue of the jawbone or emerge only slightly.

If your wisdom tooth is only partially erupted, bacteria can enter your tooth area and cause infection. If you have an impacted wisdom tooth, it can suffer from cavities and gum disease since they are hard to brush and floss.

Impacted teeth can also cause diseases, cavities, and infections. Here are some common conditions that cause teeth to become impacted:

  • Slow eruption of these teeth
  • Getting partially stuck below soft tissue
  • Settling lower than adjacent teeth
  • Erupting in an angle against adjacent teeth
  • Over-eruption of top wisdom teeth in absence of lower teeth

How do I decide if I need these teeth removed?

Wisdom teeth removal should only be done if it is hurting your oral health, such as when they become impacted teeth. Get your dentist’s recommendation before making a final decision. If you have healthy and normal wisdom teeth, there is no need for surgery.

Here are some conditions that can help you determine whether you need to get these teeth removed or not. If you answer “Yes” to any one of them, you should get a consultation from a dentist:

  • Do they cause pain?
  • Are they decaying and cannot be reached for cleaning?
  • Do they pose a risk of affecting or damaging adjacent teeth?
  • Can they weaken the jaw or increase the risk of jaw fracture?
  • Can they be removed safely and is the benefit worth the risk?

An important thing to do is keep a check on your wisdom teeth from an early age. Their position and growth can be monitored using radiographs and x-rays. If they appear to be impacted or problematic, you can get them removed early on.

If you do not receive wisdom teeth removal, they could become impacted. A flap may grow over them which can catch food and cause infection. This increases your chance of cavities or gum disease. Also, a cyst can grow around any impacted teeth, causing more damage to your jaw.

How does removal work?

How To Prepare

Schedule your appointment right before a weekend or take time off in advance. The period to recover is usually a couple of days. Buy soft foods like cottage cheese, yogurt, gelatin, or thin soup. Having these at your house ready to go will save you from making the trip later on.

Find someone to drive you to the clinic and try not to operate any heavy machinery for at least 24 hours. Have everything you think you’ll need by your bedside (gauze, trashcan, meds, etc.).

What To Expect Post-Extraction

You will have pain and swelling at the site of your dental surgery. The anesthetic will wear off post surgery. Even with medications, you will have some oral pain and swelling while you recover, along with bleeding for at least 24 hours. It is not uncommon to have numbness in your face from local anesthetic and difficulty in opening your jaw.

Make sure you keep the gauze in your mouth for at least 30 minutes to start the clotting process. If bleeding continues, contact your dentist.

Suggestions For an Infection-Free Recover Process

Eat soft foods for the first few days and then add solid foods. Do not use a straw, as this can delay the ability to recover by loosening the blood clot on the affected area.

Avoid touching the extraction area with your fingers, thumb, or tongue. This is to avoid the risk of post surgery infection to the gums or other areas. The day after surgery, you can rinse out your mouth with warm salt water to reduce swelling.

Need Wisdom Teeth Removal?

Call Dr. D’Alfonso and Lakeway Cosmetic Dentistry for your wisdom teeth removal in Austin. If you believe you may need wisdom teeth removal, you can schedule a consultation with our clinic. Conquer wisdom tooth pain and get started now by calling us at (512) 402-9399.