Getting wisdom teeth removed

Wisdom teeth are a strange thing, being the last teeth to come through, normally in your late teens or early twenties, and serving very little purpose. They are the third and last molars on the upper and lower jaws. We developed them to deal with tough food like leaves, roots, nuts and meats, but with our modern diet, we no longer need them.

Nature is phasing them out, so some people don’t have any and others have just one, two, or all four. Unfortunately, for those people who do have wisdom teeth, our jaws have become smaller over time and so wisdom teeth can be blocked by the teeth around them and get stuck or impacted. They are also tricky to clean, especially if they only partially come through and so they often cause infections.

Not all people have to get wisdom teeth removed, but around 85% will eventually need to come out, so once your wisdom teeth are through consult with your dentist and see what your options are. It’s recommended that you have them removed sooner rather than later, before 20 years old if possible, as the teeth have less developed roots so there are fewer complications. Almost all wisdom teeth can be removed by a dentist, but we recommend choosing one with an experienced surgeon and who can offer sedation to calm any nerves and make you more comfortable.

We have a lot of patients who are scared of having their wisdom teeth removed, as they have heard horror stories about the experience, but most procedures are pretty straight forward and having them out will avoid a lot of problems in later life, so it’s a sensible choice.

If your wisdom teeth have come through already and have grown, it’s easy for us to remove them. It is more complicated if they haven’t come through, or are embedded in the bone, but experienced oral surgeons will be able to perform the procedure under sedation to make it more comfortable. You should only experience a few days of discomfort and some swelling after this procedure.

We will give you a gauze pad to bite down on to reduce bleeding, but this should only last for a few hours after surgery and certainly no longer than 24 hours. If you are having significant bleeding, don’t lie flat, but prop your head up with pillows. An ice-pack on the outside of your cheek can help with the swelling. Take it easy for a few days and let your body recover and heal and rinse your mouth with warm salt water the day after the procedure to help the healing process. We recommend that you limit your diet after the procedure to soft foods like soup, smoothies, porridge, yogurt and ice cream, gradually introducing more solid foods as you heal.

At our Marbella dentist, we have a complete team of general dentists, maxillofacial surgeons and doctors experienced in giving sedation, so we can handle any wisdom teeth extractions. We will check your mouth and teeth and x-ray the area to see where the wisdom teeth are and if any issues are developing due to them. We will then explain everything to you clearly and prepare a treatment plan for you, so you understand the procedure and costs. Please contact us for a consultation before your wisdom teeth start causing you pain, or infections to make the procedure as simple and pain free as possible.

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