Proudly serving the Gainesville community since 1987.
At Van Dyke General and Implant Dentistry we have over 30 years of experience. As a family-owned and operated dental practice, we prioritize customer service and quality care. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about our wisdom tooth removal process.
Wisdom teeth are the third molars and are the last permanent teeth to appear in the mouth. On average, they emerge between 17–25 years old, but not all wisdom teeth will erupt through the gum and some get trapped in the bone or grow at an angle causing dental issues.
Wisdom teeth emerge later in life than all other teeth. Not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed, but if they do not have adequate space or cause pain, it is best to remove them. Pain near the back of the mouth may be caused by erupting wisdom teeth or by the movement and shifting of surrounding teeth to make room for the erupting teeth. The movement of these teeth can shift surrounding teeth to disturb the look of your smile and cause pain. Contact us today so we can help determine whether you will need your wisdom teeth removed!
An impacted wisdom tooth refers to the tooth being stuck in the jaw bone. Ideally, the tooth would move from the jaw bone through the gum to be visible in the mouth. Impaction determines the ease of the surgery and length of recovery time. Don’t worry if you have an impacted wisdom tooth, our experienced dentists in Gainesville are able to remove them as painlessly as a non-impacted tooth.
A wisdom tooth that has no impaction has come through the gum and is visible. Even if the smallest part of the wisdom tooth is visible through the gum, it is considered an erupted, non-impacted wisdom tooth.
If the gum covers the wisdom tooth but has gone through the jaw bone, this is considered a soft tissue impaction. To access the full tooth, our dentists will need to cut through the gum, giving us easy access to remove your wisdom teeth.
A partial bony impaction means part of the tooth is trapped in the jaw, meaning a small portion of the jaw bone will need to be removed to extract the tooth. The tooth itself may need to be sectioned off and removed in smaller pieces.
In a complete impaction, the tooth is completely surrounded by the jaw bone. The tooth will need to be exposed for extraction. Full impactions are the most time-consuming and difficult of wisdom tooth removals.
Wisdom teeth can become impacted if they do not have enough room to erupt into the mouth. These impacted wisdom teeth can cause a myriad of problems, including the following.
Pericoronitis, inflammation surrounding a partially erupted tooth, can also call for the removal of the tooth. Wisdom teeth are often removed before they cause issues as asymptomatic wisdom teeth can still be diseased and it can be easier and less of a risk to remove the teeth from a younger person.
On the day of your procedure, you will need to be accompanied by a friend or family member. Due to the anesthesia, you will be foggy and unable to drive or navigate transportation on your own. Remember not to eat or drink anything for at least eight hours before your appointment and arrive at the office 15 minutes early.
In the treatment room, you will be given general anesthesia, administered in various ways, such as IV, pill, or gas. Most procedures take 30–60 minutes depending on the level of eruption of the tooth and how many wisdom teeth are being removed. For the patient, this time usually feels like the blink of an eye!
Proper after-care can prevent infection, accelerate healing, and reduce pain and discomfort. After the surgery, the patient will need to change the gauze as directed by the dentist. Pain can be managed by over-the-counter remedies such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, or your doctor may give you prescription pain medication. Ice packs placed on the jaw can help minimize pain as well as reduce swelling and bruising. You should drink plenty of water during the first 24 hours but refrain from especially hot, cold, caffeinated, or carbonated beverages. You should also avoid using a straw to minimize the risk of losing the blood clot formed at the surgery site.
Following surgery, you should plan to eat soft foods, like pudding or yogurts, and then semi-soft foods as they are tolerated. You will not be able to brush your teeth for about 24 hours but can resume after a day, being especially gentle near the surgery sites. It is important to focus on keeping the extraction sites clean throughout your recovery process, and you will be instructed to gently flush the site after every time you eat.
Recovery from wisdom teeth removal is quick and straightforward. On the day of wisdom teeth removal, you should plan to rest for the remainder of the day, and for up to 24 hours. You can resume activity the following day, refraining from any strenuous activity for about a week. Swelling is normal and may last up to a week.
It is important to plan for a few rest days off of work or school to recover from the procedure. This is not only because of the visible swelling in the first couple of days but you also should try to minimize talking and closely monitor eating and drinking.