Opting for impacted wisdom teeth removal can become a necessity in cases where the tooth is causing a lot of pain and discomfort to the individual. Continue reading for more information on the procedure involved, and the protocol followed during this procedure.
One of the most common dental problems that can affect an individual is an impacted wisdom tooth. Wisdom teeth – or the third molars, are teeth that ideally should erupt at the end of the dentition in the mouth. However, due to many reasons – such as a small jaw, tooth size and jaw size discrepancy, excess pain and infection in the region of the third molar, it may become necessary to remove this bothersome tooth.
When a person needs to get his/her wisdom teeth removed, he needs to first get an X-ray done. Rather than taking four different X-rays, one large X-ray that provides a panoramic view – known as an orthopantomogram, is ideal in most of the cases. However, if this X-ray is not very clear or the angulation of the teeth is not easily discernable, then one can go in for individual smaller X-rays.
Once the X-rays have been removed, they are studied to check for the amount of bone present in the vicinity of the tooth, and eventually the surgeon decides and plans the procedure in accordance to the same. There are different positions in which the wisdom tooth could be present in the jaw:
- The wisdom tooth could be mesioangular, i.e. it could be in a tilted position with the crown facing towards the other teeth and the root tilted to face away from the teeth.
- It could be vertically placed, that is, it could be present below the gum line, but vertically below the tooth. (This may not clearly show in an orthopantomogram).
- The tooth could be in a sleeping position, that is, it could be horizontally placed.
- The tooth in question could be partially erupted and some of the crown portion could have been exposed.
Wisdom Teeth Removal Procedure
Firstly, the patient is prepared for the procedure. After a sterilized cloth is placed on the facial region around the mouth, the area is swabbed with betadine, so as to prevent the chances of an infection. Once this is done, the surgeon will most likely administer local anesthesia, so as to sedate the region where the wisdom tooth lies. At times, especially if the patient is very apprehensive and uncooperative or if there is simultaneous extraction of multiple wisdom teeth then needs to be done, then this procedure can also be done under general anesthesia.
Once the region is numb, then an incision is taken to expose the region and gain visibility of the tooth. The incision has to be large enough to eventually allow access of dental instruments into it. As bleeding will start from this point on, a sterilized cotton is used to get rid of the same. Then, attempts are made to wedge the tooth out of the socket. There are many different instruments that can be used by the surgeon to loosen the tooth out of the socket.
If the impacted wisdom tooth is very deep set, then a drill may also be required to open the jawbone, so as to create space to remove the tooth. If the tooth is present at an inaccessible angle, or if the bone covering is very thick, then the surgeon may even need to section the tooth while removing it, so as to make sure that he doesn’t end up damaging to the jawbone.
Once the tooth is out of the jaw, then the region is irrigated so as to prevent the chances of an infection. Usually, the wound is quite large due to the incision taken, and hence, stitches are administered in most of the cases. These may be self absorbent but if they aren’t, then the patient will need to come back after a week or so to get the stitches removed. The patient will be provided some painkillers to cope with the pain that he may experience in course of the removal process. Antibiotics are also administered to the patient, so as to minimize the chances of an infection.
There are really not many options when it comes to dealing with a painful impacted wisdom tooth. Although one can take in antibiotics or painkillers to deal with this problem for the time being, the final solution only lies in getting it removed. The cost incurred on removal of an impacted wisdom tooth exceeds the cost incurred on regular extraction, and that is something which can be a slight hindrance to the patient. Due to many problems involving a wisdom tooth, it is best to get it extracted at the end of the day, and that will help you get rid of the root cause of the problem once and for all.