Wisdom Tooth Removal in Orlando

What to Expect and How to Prepare

What is Wisdom Tooth Removal?

As you prepare to undergo wisdom tooth removal, you may wonder what to expect from the procedure and how to prepare for a smooth recovery. Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, can cause many problems if they don’t have enough room to grow. This can lead to impaction, pain, infection, and other dental issues. 

We’ll guide you through the wisdom tooth removal process, from understanding why it’s necessary to know what to expect during and after the procedure. You’ll be well-equipped to tackle the experience confidently and emerge with a healthier, happier smile.

A woman smiling after her tooth extraction

Wisdom tooth extraction is a common dental operation that involves removing one or more wisdom teeth. 

This procedure aims to remove the four permanent adult teeth located at the back corners of your mouth on the top and bottom.

Why Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed

Occasionally, a wisdom tooth may not have enough room to grow, leading to impaction. 

Impacted wisdom teeth can cause various problems, including pain, infection of surrounding teeth, and bone damage.

Another reason wisdom teeth need to be removed is that they can lead to problems later in life, even if they’re not currently causing any issues. 

For instance, wisdom teeth that don’t have enough space to come through can be challenging to clean properly, making them more prone to decay and infection. Additionally, removing wisdom teeth in younger adults tends to be safer and carries fewer complications than older adults.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth

There’s a good chance you’ve heard of impacted wisdom teeth, but do you know what they are and how they can affect your oral health?

What are Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth that don’t have enough room to grow normally are considered impacted. This means they may grow at an odd angle, towards the next tooth, towards the back of the mouth, or even stay trapped within the jawbone.

Types of Impaction

Impacted wisdom teeth can be classified into different types based on their position and growth pattern.

Here are some common types:

Vertical Impaction

The tooth grows straight up or down like other teeth but stays trapped within the jawbone.

Horizontal Impaction

The tooth grows at a right angle to the other teeth, as if “lying down” within the jawbone.

Angular Impaction

The tooth grows at an angle towards the next tooth or towards the back of the mouth.

Distoangular Impaction

The tooth grows at an angle towards the back of the mouth.

Mesioangular Impaction

The tooth grows at an angle towards the next tooth.

Understanding the type of impaction is important because it can affect the removal process and potential complications. 

Any impacted wisdom tooth can cause problems, so it’s imperative to discuss your options with your Orlando dentists, Dr. Morales or Dr. Medina.

Problems Caused by Impacted Wisdom Teeth

Orlando Dental Treatment Options

Impacted wisdom teeth can cause pain, infection, and damage to surrounding teeth and bone. They can also lead to cysts, tumors, and, in rare cases, nerve damage.
Types of problems caused by impacted wisdom teeth include:

  • Pain and discomfort

  • Infection and gum disease

  • Tooth decay and damage to surrounding teeth

  • Cysts and tumors

  • Nerve damage

It’s imperative to address impacted wisdom teeth to prevent these problems from occurring or to treat them if they’ve already developed. 

Dr. Morales or Dr. Medina can help you determine the best course of action for your specific situation.

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Additional Information About Wisdom Tooth Removal

  • Preventing Future Dental Problems

    Since you’ve undergone wisdom tooth removal, preventing future dental problems is crucial. 

    By doing so, you can maintain good oral health and avoid potential issues that may arise from impacted wisdom teeth.

    Removing Wisdom Teeth to Prevent Problems

    Problems with impacted wisdom teeth can be avoided by removing them early on. 

    This preventive measure can help you avoid pain, infection, and other dental complications that may arise from impacted wisdom teeth.

    Benefits of Early Removal

    Wisdom teeth that don’t have enough room to grow can lead to many problems, including infection, tooth decay, and damage to surrounding teeth and bone. 

    Removing wisdom teeth early can avoid these issues and ensure a healthier smile.

    Early removal of wisdom teeth can also reduce the risk of complications during surgery, as the procedure is generally safer and more straightforward when performed on younger adults. 

    Additionally, early removal can help prevent cysts and tumors from forming around the impacted tooth, leading to more severe dental problems.

  • Risks of Wisdom Tooth Removal

    Not all wisdom tooth removal procedures go smoothly. While very rare, complications can occur, and it’s important to be aware of them.

    As with any surgical procedure, wisdom tooth removal involves risks.

    Understanding these risks can help you prepare and make informed decisions about your care.

    Common Risks

    The most common risks of wisdom tooth removal include pain, swelling, and bleeding during and after the procedure.

    You may also experience numbness or tingling sensations in your tongue, lip, or chin, which usually resolve within a few days.

    Rare Complications

    Nerve damage is an occasional, rare complication of wisdom tooth removal, which can cause numbness, tingling, or pain in the tongue, lip, or chin.

    Another rare complication is an infection in the socket where the tooth was removed, which can usually be treated with antibiotics

    Another rare but potential complication is a dry socket, also known as alveolar osteitis. This occurs when the blood clot that forms in the socket is dislodged, exposing the bone and nerve endings. It can be painful and may require additional treatment.

    While these complications are rare, it’s crucial to follow your dentist or oral surgeon’s instructions carefully to minimize the risk of them occurring.

  • Preparing for Surgery

    Although wisdom tooth removal is a common procedure, it’s important to prepare adequately to ensure a smooth and successful surgery.

    Here’s what you need to know:

    Questions to Ask Your Dentist or Oral Surgeon

    To ensure you’re fully informed, ask your dentist or oral surgeon questions such as:

    • What type of anesthesia will be used?
    • How long will the procedure last?
    • Will this be a complicated procedure?
    • Have the impacted wisdom teeth damaged other teeth?
    • Could this cause nerve damage?
    • What other dental treatments will I need?
    • How long does it take to heal?

    Plus, you’ll need to arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure, as you may still be under the effects of anesthesia.

    Additionally, make sure to ask about any medications you should take or avoid before the surgery and what time you should stop eating or drinking before the procedure.

  • Types of Anesthesia

    Many people wonder what type of anesthesia they will receive during their wisdom tooth removal procedure.

    The type of anesthesia used depends on the complexity of the procedure, your comfort level, and the dentist’s recommendation.

    Local Anesthesia

    Any discomfort from the procedure is minimized with local anesthesia, which numbs the area around the wisdom tooth.

    You’ll remain awake during the procedure, but you won’t feel any pain.

    Sedation Anesthesia

    The sedation anesthesia helps you relax and feel sleepy during the procedure.

    You won’t feel any pain, and you won’t remember much about the procedure.

    Anesthesia sedation is different from general anesthesia, where you’re completely asleep and require a ventilator to breathe for you.

    With sedation anesthesia, you’ll still be able to breathe independently.

    General Anesthesia

    To ensure your comfort during complex procedures, general anesthesia may be recommended.

    You’ll fall asleep and won’t feel any pain during the procedure.

    Following your dentist or oral surgeon’s instructions carefully after receiving general anesthesia is vital, as you may need someone to drive you home and assist you with recovery.

  • What to Expect During the Procedure

    The procedure begins with Dr. Morales or Dr. Medina administering anesthesia to ensure your comfort. 

    They’ll then cut the gum tissue to expose the tooth and bone, remove any bone that blocks access to the tooth root, and divide the tooth into sections if necessary.

    Finally, they’ll remove the tooth and clean the site of any debris.

    Closing the Wound

    With the tooth removed, Dr. Morales or Dr. Medina will stitch the wound closed to promote healing, although this isn’t always necessary.

    They’ll also place gauze over the site where the wisdom tooth was removed to control bleeding and help a blood clot form.

    Following the instructions on bleeding, pain management, swelling, and bruising is essential after the procedure.

    You’ll need to replace the gauze as directed, manage your pain with prescribed medication, and use an ice pack to reduce swelling and ease pain.

    By following these instructions, you’ll ensure a smooth and comfortable recovery.

  • What to Expect After the Procedure

    All wisdom tooth removal procedures involve some level of anesthesia, which affects how you feel afterward.

    Recovery Room

    With sedation anesthesia or general anesthesia, you’ll be taken to a recovery room after the procedure.

    Our expert team will monitor your vital signs and ensure you’re comfortable as the anesthesia wears off.

  • Managing Pain & Discomfort

    We will provide guidance on managing pain and discomfort after wisdom tooth removal. Following these instructions carefully is vital to ensure a smooth and comfortable recovery.

    Pain Relievers

    The pain relievers you are recommended will depend on the complexity of the procedure and your individual needs.

    You may be able to manage pain with over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), or a combination of both.

    In some cases, prescription pain medication may be necessary.

    Ice Packs and Elevation

    Relievers like ice packs can be applied to the affected area for 15-20 minutes, with a 30-minute break in between.

    This technique helps constrict blood vessels, reducing bleeding and swelling. Elevation of the head also helps reduce swelling by allowing gravity to drain excess fluid away from the affected area.

    Combining ice packs and elevation can effectively manage pain and discomfort during the recovery period.

  • Bleeding & Swelling

    After the wisdom tooth removal procedure, you may experience bleeding and swelling. These are normal reactions to the surgery, and we will guide you through managing them.

    Controlling Bleeding

    An important aspect of post-operative care is controlling bleeding. Some blood may ooze from the surgical site on the first day after the procedure.

    To minimize bleeding, avoid spitting excessively, as this can dislodge the blood clot from the socket.

    Replace the gauze over the surgical site as directed.

    Reducing Swelling

    Controlling swelling is crucial in the healing process. Use an ice pack as directed to reduce swelling.

    Any swelling of your cheeks usually subsides within two or three days.

    Bruising may take several more days to resolve.

    Bleeding and swelling are common reactions to wisdom tooth removal, but they can be appropriately managed.

    Remember to drink plenty of water, eat soft foods, and avoid activities that may dislodge the blood clot from the socket.

  • Activity & Diet

    Your activity level and diet will play a significant role in your recovery after wisdom tooth removal. 

    Rest and Relaxation

    Plan to relax and take it easy on the day of your surgery. Avoid strenuous activities, such as heavy lifting, bending, or exercise, as they can dislodge the blood clot and delay healing.

    Instead, focus on resting and allowing your body to recover.

    Soft Foods and Beverages

    Rest assured that a soft food diet will be your best friend during the initial recovery period. Opt for easy chew-and-swallow foods like yogurt, applesauce, mashed potatoes, and scrambled eggs.

    Avoid hot, spicy, or acidic foods that can irritate the wound.

    Foods high in fiber, such as fruits and vegetables, can be particularly challenging to eat during this time.

    Instead, try pureed or cooked versions of these foods to make them easier to manage.

    Avoid drinking through a straw, as the suction can dislodge the blood clot.

    Stick to gentle, lukewarm beverages like water, tea, or broth to stay hydrated and comfortable.

  • Follow-Up Care

    After your wisdom teeth are removed, you’ll need to attend a follow-up appointment to check on the healing process and address any concerns you may have.

    Scheduling a Follow-Up Appointment

    One of the most critical aspects of follow-up care is scheduling your post-operative appointment.

    This appointment typically takes place 7-10 days after the procedure. It allows Dr. Morales or Dr. Medina to assess the healing process, remove any stitches, and address any complications that may have arisen.

    Wisdom tooth removal is a common surgical procedure that can help prevent future dental problems.

    Understanding what to expect and how to prepare will better equip you to navigate the process confidently.

    Remember to ask questions, follow instructions carefully, and take it easy during recovery. With proper care, you’ll be back to your routine in no time.