For some adults, it's typical to go through the teething process again between the ages of 17 and 21, when your wisdom teeth begin to emerge.
For some people, their wisdom teeth never emerge. For a lucky few, a wisdom tooth emerging is a hassle-free process, while it's uncomfortable and painful for many others.
Wisdom teeth extraction is a standard procedure we recommend if your wisdom tooth is causing pain and discomfort here at Livwell Dentistry in San Francisco and San Ramon, California.
Our expert dentists, Dr. Wenli Loo and Dr. Steve Deng use modern technology to extract wisdom teeth in a way that makes the procedure seamless for you.
If you are unsure what to expect before and after your extraction, read on to learn more about how to prepare for the procedure and how to take care afterward.
How to prepare for wisdom teeth extraction
The first step is determining if your wisdom teeth need extraction. We do this by thoroughly examining your teeth and the surrounding areas around any teeth that are causing you discomfort.
If we conclude you need an extraction, we will then take a series of dental X-rays to determine the exact position of your wisdom teeth and plan the best way to extract them.
What to expect during the procedure
Many people fear that wisdom teeth extraction is a painful procedure. However, we use some form of anesthesia during the process, which guarantees you don't feel any pain.
The type of anesthesia we use depends on factors such as your age or if you have any pre-existing medical conditions. We could use local anesthesia to numb the general area around the teeth or general anesthesia to put you under during the procedure.
After administering anesthesia, we'll make an incision around the tooth that’s giving you trouble and extract it. Sometimes a tooth is impacted, which means it got stuck below your gum when emerging. We'll remove the surrounding gum and bone tissues in such a case.
Finally, we clean the area from which the tooth was extracted and, if necessary, put in a couple of stitches to close up the gum. The whole procedure takes about an hour if there are no complications.
What to do after your extraction
It's typical to experience some pain and swelling after the procedure, especially when the anesthesia completely wears off. This could go on for a few days. However, if you also have a fever, heavy bleeding, or numbness, come in to see us because this might be a sign of an infection.
Avoid any strenuous activities for a few days after your extraction. You should also avoid the extraction area when brushing or flossing. We recommend regularly rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater gently to encourage healing.
Your diet also plays a crucial role in your healing process. Foods like yogurt and pudding are encouraged for the first few days after your extraction as they put no strain on your teeth when you eat them.
At your follow-up appointment, we'll check in on your healing progress and remove any stitches you have.
Are your wisdom teeth giving you trouble? With the proper preparation and our skilled dentists, they can be extracted in a seamless and relatively pain-free procedure here at LivwellDentistry. Call us at 415-477-3700, or schedule your appointment on our website.