Getting Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Getting Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Sep 06, 2013

Your wisdom teeth are the third molars that develop in each of the four quadrants of the mouth- upper, lower, left, and right. They usually erupt between the ages of 16 and 23. Some people never develop wisdom teeth and sometimes they erupt cleanly without causing any crowding issues. When wisdom teeth prevent access to adjacent teeth or become impacted they need to be removed by an oral surgeon.

Diagnosing Impacted Wisdom Teeth

The dentist can tell if your wisdom teeth are impacted by examining a panoramic x-ray of your mouth. Patients whose wisdom teeth are partially erupted through the gum tissue may notice inflammation that can then turn into an infection called pericoronitis. It occurs when bacteria gets under the tissue growth and may cause a bad taste in the mouth

The Extraction Process

You won’t feel any discomfort during the extraction. The dentist will administer anesthesia first to numb the area completely. Then the tissue and bone are removed to make it easier for the dentist to extract the tooth from the socket cleanly. Once the tooth is removed you may need a few stitches to protect the area while it heals. The dentist will apply gauze to the area before you leave the office to control the bleeding.


It can take 2-3 days to heal from a wisdom tooth extraction. During that time it is normal to experience some bleeding, which will improve after the first 24 hours. The dentist will prescribe medication to make recovery more comfortable. You will also receive instructions for taking care of the surgical site. The most important thing is to protect the blood clot in the site so it doesn’t dislodge accidentally causing dry socket. If dry socket does occur the dentist should be contacted right away so that the area can be packed with medication.

Wisdom tooth extraction is a common surgery routinely performed by oral surgeons. If you are concerned that your wisdom teeth may be impacted then let your dentist know right away.

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