Teeth Whitening

Wisdom Teeth Extraction: What to Do Before, During, & After

Don’t know what to do before, after, and during the wisdom teeth extraction process. Uncover the details shared by expert dentists of Calgary.

A person sitting and holding his chin with one hand

Wisdom teeth were needed for primitive people to chew through foods consisting of raw meat and plants. Today, your food can be ground, chopped, and cooked, making it easy to consume without this set of extra back molars. These changes in diet have led to the absence of wisdom teeth in some people and big problems with normal development in others, but, you are in luck! Wisdom teeth extraction in SW Calgary can eliminate issues and still leave you with a fully functioning oral cavity.

Why Might You Get Wisdom Teeth Removal in SW Calgary?

Oral surgery has become a standard practice and thanks to anesthesia that numbs the area being worked on, wisdom tooth removal is virtually painless. So, if you need to undergo this procedure you can be confident the process will go smoothly.  Your dentist will examine the growth and position of your wisdom teeth to determine if the removal of one or all is necessary. Some reasons you may need wisdom teeth extraction are:

  • Wanting to Stay Put – Do you have stubborn wisdom teeth that refuse to pop through your gums? This can cause infection which may damage the roots of your other teeth and possibly erode the bone that supports them.
  • Only Partial Eruption – When your molars only slightly appear, it can make the area difficult to clean inviting bacteria to form. Bacteria is a leading cause of gum disease.
  • Growing in Off-Kilter – You might have fully erupted wisdom teeth, but they may have grown in at weird angles, crowding and moving your other teeth into abnormal positions.

Before Your Wisdom Tooth Treatment

Are you wondering what to expect before wisdom teeth removal?

Your dentist will examine the inside of your mouth and use X-rays to see below the surface of the gums, then inform you if you need a:

1. Simple Extraction – Local anesthesia will be used to numb the area. The wisdom tooth is extracted with a dental tool called an elevator. Forceps are then required to remove it from its socket.

2. Surgical Extraction – Local and IV anesthesia might be used in combination. Numbing the area and helping you relax with sedation will put you at ease.  The procedure may require your gums to be cut along with the possibility of some surrounding bone. Your tooth will then be removed.  

Before any extraction, you will be informed of the process and given the opportunity to ask questions. Your dentist will make sure there are no health concerns that could get in the way of the treatment. It is important to inform your dentist of any medications you are taking to ensure a smooth wisdom teeth extraction in SW Calgary.

A palm of a hand holding multiple white teeths

During Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Wisdom tooth extractions typically take about 45 minutes. The anesthesia, depending on the type, will be given to you either slightly before or during the treatment. Your wisdom tooth is removed from your mouth and the wound is stitched shut. A gauze pad is placed on top of the open area to absorb any bleeding while a blood clot forms. The gauze might need replacement and can be removed after three or four hours.

After Wisdom Tooth Extraction

It will take some time to heal from a wisdom tooth extraction. Rest is crucial. You will need to avoid strenuous activities for 24 hours. For your safety, have someone drive you home and stay with you for several hours after.

Dry socket can be excruciatingly painful and can happen if you brush and rinse your teeth too soon after your extraction. You may require an emergency dental visit if you experience dry socket. Using an ice pack on the external area can help the swelling subside.

A sore jaw and numbness are common side effects of wisdom tooth removal. Usually, the soreness goes away in a few days and the numbness after 24 hours. Your dentist will provide a prescription for pain medication to help you with the post-procedure period. After resting, you will gradually start to feel better and get back to your routine.  The complete healing process will take a few weeks, but if anything goes awry, contact your dentist right away.

Notes to Help the Healing Process

Here are a few tips to aid in a smooth recovery:

  • Eat soft foods.
  • Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
  • Avoid using a straw for the first three days at minimum so you don’t end up with dry socket.
  • Help control the bleeding and swelling by elevating your head with two or three pillows as you sleep.

A Healthy Smile

Wisdom teeth extraction in SW Calgary at Glenbrook Dental can bring you confidence and elevate your oral health. We are here for you every step of the way so if you have questions before, during, or after your treatment, feel free to contact us with any concerns. Your healthy, happy smile is important to us.