Modern dentistry aims to preserve natural teeth. However, when the teeth have become badly damaged or decayed, they may need to be removed. Some of the options to replace the missing tooth or teeth include bridges, dentures and implants.
Wisdom teeth usually erupt between the ages of 17 and 21 years. Some people are unaffected by them, however, others develop painful conditions that will require the removal of wisdom teeth. Often there is little or no room to allow wisdom teeth to come through properly due to limited space at the back of the jaw. This can cause overcrowding of the existing teeth and impaction which can result in gum infection and facial swelling.
A full mouth X-ray (OPG) is recommended to diagnose the need for wisdom teeth removal. Most of the time, the wisdom tooth may be removed using local anaesthetic which can be done in the chair. In some cases, the patient may be referred to an oral surgeon to have the wisdom teeth taken out under general anaesthesia depending on the difficulty of the procedure.
Home care instructions after teeth extraction
- Take painkillers and antibiotics as required.
- Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol for 48 hours after extraction.
- Eat soft, easy-to-chew foods for the next few days.
- Rinse your mouth out with warm salty water three times a day after 24 hours.