Wisdom Tooth Removal
When a wisdom tooth erupts and becomes impacted, it can cause severe discomfort and lead to complications such as misalignment or oral infections. At Smile Montreal in Montreal, QC, we offer gentle, advanced wisdom tooth removal. This procedure can prevent oral health conditions and promote long-term optimal oral health. Our doctors can provide oral conscious or IV sedation to help you feel more comfortable during your wisdom tooth removal surgery.
About Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are located in the back of the jaw and are the last set of adult teeth to erupt. These teeth were essential for our ancient ancestors, who ate seeds, nuts, roots, and other tough foods for sustenance. Due to a lack of oral hygiene, these individuals often lost several of their teeth by their mid-twenties. Therefore, wisdom teeth were quite useful.
Today, however, many individuals still have a full set of teeth by adulthood, leaving little to no room in the jaw for the eruption of wisdom teeth. As a result, these teeth often grow in at an angle or become partially or fully trapped in the jawbone. This can lead to a number of oral health issues, including decay, infection, shifting, discomfort, and more. For this reason, most dental professionals agree that proactively removing wisdom teeth can prevent further complications.
Initial Consultation and Diagnosis
To determine your candidacy for wisdom tooth removal, our doctors will perform a comprehensive oral evaluation. This will include a visual examination of your teeth and gums as well as scans and x-rays to assess the underlying roots and jawbone. Our cone beam CT scanner can capture thousands of images and stitch them together, creating an incredibly accurate representation of your unique dental anatomy. This helps our doctors identify important orofacial landmarks and provide precise treatment for our patients.
Options in Sedation Dentistry
- Oral conscious sedation: To induce relaxation, patients take a sedative pill approximately one hour before their dental appointment.
- IV sedation: During this procedure, sedative medications are delivered directly to the bloodstream. Dosages can be adjusted throughout the treatment process.
Both of these sedation options temporarily affect cognitive ability and motor skills. For this reason, patients must arrange for a friend or family member to drive them to and from our office. The doctor can discuss these options with you in detail during your consultation.
Wisdom Tooth Removal
Wisdom tooth removal can be performed in our office in about one hour. Although each procedure will be catered to the patient’s individual needs, the general steps for this treatment include:
- Anesthesia: Before beginning the procedure, the dentist will administer local anesthesia to numb the teeth and gums. If you have chosen sedation, these medications will be administered as well.
- Incisions: Dr. Casey creates a small incision in the gums near the affected tooth.
- Removal: Once the tooth is accessed, Dr. Casey uses gentle techniques to remove it. In some cases, the tooth is divided into segments for easier extraction.
- Stitches: After the tooth has been removed, Dr. Casey will close the incision with surgical sutures. These will typically dissolve within a few days.
- Gauze Placement: Finally, a small piece of gauze is placed over the surgical site to slow bleeding.
Healing and Recovery
Since wisdom tooth removal is a surgical treatment, patients can expect some level of discomfort following the procedure. However, these side effects can be successfully managed with ibuprofen, naproxen, or other over-the-counter pain relievers. Swelling is also a natural occurrence after tooth removal. To reduce inflammation, patients can apply a cold compress to the external jaw. This should be done in 20-minute increments for the first 24 hours.
We will provide you with a detailed list of post-operative instructions. To ensure a comfortable, successful recovery, these guidelines should be followed precisely.
During the first few days of recovery, it is important to avoid strenuous activity. An elevation in heart rate can increase the risk for post-operative bleeding, swelling, and discomfort. In addition, patients should eat a soft food diet, consisting of items such as yogurt, pudding, applesauce, pasta, eggs, and smoothies. Drinking through straws should also be avoided, as this can increase the risk of dry sockets.
In most cases, patients are able to return to work and normal activities in about two to three days. Dr. Casey will provide you with a detailed list of post-operative instructions. To ensure a comfortable, successful recovery, these guidelines should be followed precisely.