Wisdom Tooth Removal The What, Why, and How

Wisdom Tooth Removal: The What, Why, and How

The removal of wisdom teeth is a common dental procedure, yet it holds significant importance in dental health. These molars, often appearing during late adolescence or early adulthood, can sometimes create complications that affect overall oral health.

Understanding the what, why, and how of wisdom tooth removal not only prepares you for the procedure but also highlights its importance in maintaining a healthy mouth. With that said, this blog delves into the details related to wisdom tooth extraction.

What is a Wisdom Tooth?

The wisdom tooth, commonly known as the third molar, usually emerges in the late teens or early twenties. While most adults typically have four wisdom teeth, one in each corner of their mouth, it is not uncommon for some individuals to have fewer or none.

Evolutionary Background

Historically, wisdom teeth played a crucial role in our ancestors’ diets, which comprised tougher foods that required more chewing power. As human diets progressed and cooking methods developed, the need for these extra molars diminished. Today, humans have smaller jaws than their ancestors, which may result in inadequate space for these teeth to emerge fully.

The Problem with Impaction

When a wisdom tooth is ‘impacted’, it means it has yet to fully erupt into its normal position. This can be due to a lack of space or misalignment. Impacted wisdom teeth may lead to several problems:

  • They may grow at an angle, potentially damaging neighbouring teeth.
  • Partially erupted wisdom teeth can create openings that can be a breeding ground for bacteria, leading to infection.
  • They can cause pain, swelling, jaw stiffness, and general illness.

Understanding the nature of wisdom teeth and their potential problems may set the stage for realising why their removal can be necessary and beneficial.

Why is Removal Necessary?

Wisdom teeth may cause a variety of problems when they do not have enough room to emerge or grow properly. Some of the common issues include:

  • Pain and discomfort as the tooth pushes against other teeth or bones.
  • Infection or gum disease due to difficulty in cleaning partially erupted wisdom teeth.
  • Tooth decay in partially erupted wisdom teeth.
  • Cyst development around the tooth.
  • Misalignment of other teeth, caused by pressure from the emerging wisdom tooth.

The Wisdom Tooth Extraction Procedure

The Wisdom Tooth Extraction Procedure

Before your consultation with the dentist, the dental team at your chosen clinic will conduct an initial consultation to learn about your medical history. At the same time, this gives you an idea of how much it would cost for a wisdom tooth extraction in Singapore. In general, a wisdom tooth extraction at a dental clinic near you will typically involve:

1. Consultation and X-ray Imaging

The dentist will conduct a thorough oral examination, focusing on the affected wisdom tooth or teeth. This step is crucial to help evaluate any potential risks or complications before the extraction. Additionally, dental imaging may be taken to get a clearer view of the wisdom tooth’s position in relation to surrounding teeth, nerves, and bone structure. This imaging may help in planning the extraction method.

2. Discussion on Sedation Options

Subsequently, the dental team will discuss different sedation options with you depending on the complexity of the extraction and your comfort level. These options may include local anaesthesia, which numbs the area around the tooth, or sedation for optimum comfort during more complex cases. The dentist will recommend the most appropriate sedation option accordingly.

3. The Extraction Process

Once the area around the wisdom tooth is prepared and numbed, the dentist will use the tools to loosen and extract the wisdom tooth. If the tooth is impacted, a minor surgical procedure may be required to remove the tooth in sections or to make a small incision in the gum. Throughout the procedure, the dental team will monitor your comfort level and respond to any signs of discomfort.

Immediately after the extraction, the dentist will provide you with detailed instructions on how to care for the extraction site, including what to eat after your wisdom tooth surgery, as well as guidelines on oral hygiene and activity restrictions.

Recovery and Post-operative Care

Recovering from wisdom tooth extraction is an essential part of the process, and the dental clinic will recommend proper post-operative care for optimal healing while minimising the risk of complications.

You may experience numbness due to anaesthesia and some swelling or discomfort immediately after the procedure. The dentist may prescribe some medication to help manage the pain. If necessary, you may also use cold packs to help relieve the swelling or discomfort.

Subsequently, the dental clinic may advise you on the following:

  • Avoid vigorous mouth rinsing or touching the wound area, which can dislodge the blood clot.
  • Eat soft foods and avoid hot liquids for the first few days after the wisdom tooth surgery.
  • Practise gentle oral hygiene to keep the area clean while avoiding irritation.

Once the wound heals, the dental clinic may schedule follow-up visits to monitor the healing progress and address any concerns. These check-ups allow the dentist to provide additional care tips tailored to your situation. Maintaining good oral hygiene practices is advisable to prevent future dental problems. 

Remove Your Wisdom Tooth at a Dental Clinic Near You

Addressing your wisdom tooth concerns is not just about managing your discomfort; it is a step towards better oral health. Whether it is an emergency wisdom tooth extraction or a planned procedure, the emergency dentist at the 24-hour clinic in Jurong East can help provide the care you need.

Don’t wait for your dental issues to escalate; seek professional advice from TWC Implant & Dental Centre today and take the first step towards resolving your wisdom tooth concerns.

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