As an adult you can expect to grow a total of 32 permanent teeth. Your third molars, or wisdom teeth are the last to erupt somewhere between 17 and 24 years of age. But for many of us, our wisdom teeth cause problems. Impactions occur when wisdom teeth are pointed in the wrong direction during eruption. This situation can set the stage for a number of problems for which your cosmetic dentist is uniquely trained to treat.
Symptoms of Problem Wisdom Teeth
As your wisdom teeth start to come in incorrectly, you may experience a variety of problems. Not everyone will have trouble with their wisdom teeth coming in and not everyone will experience the same problems or symptoms. Some symptoms to be aware of include:
While any of these symptoms are worth contacting your dentist about, the most problematic will be the crowding of teeth. This will generally require having your wisdom teeth extracted. Be sure you choose an experienced cosmetic dentist so ensure the best possible results from having your wisdom teeth removed.
Wisdom Teeth Removal and Recovery
Removing wisdom teeth is a fairly common type of oral surgery and can easily be done in your cosmetic dentist's office. You should have someone available to drive you to and from your appointment, however, since you will be sedated for the procedure.
Before the procedure, your cosmetic dentist will administer both a local anesthetic to numb the area around the tooth that will be extracted.
Next, your cosmetic dentist will open the gum tissue over or around the wisdom tooth, remove any bone that is blocking the way and then remove the tooth. After a few stitches are used to close the gum area and gauze is applied to help control any bleeding, you'll be awakened and will be allowed to rest a bit before leaving.
Following your wisdom tooth extraction, your mouth will be numb so you'll want to be extra careful to not bite the inside of your mouth or tongue. Relaxing, using an ice pack and moist heat for the first 24 hours is strongly recommended. As your mouth starts to heal, you'll be able to start eating some soft foods but should not use a straw as the suction may accidently open the stitches.
Barring any complications, you should be completely healed in 3 to 4 weeks, with the extraction pretty much healed in about a week. During your initial consultation, however, your cosmetic dentist will go over all the information, including any risks to be aware of, and you'll receive complete instructions to follow after the procedure.