Wisdom teeth removal

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Oral Surgery

A wide range of oral surgical procedures are carried out at Blockhouse Bay Dental Centre. From simple tooth extractions, biopsies, surgical root canal treatments, to wisdom teeth removals, Auckland customers have access to a variety of cutting-edge, dental services at one location.

Our first preference is to attempt to save the tooth but unfortunately, in some situations, this is beyond the means of even modern dentistry.

All of our oral surgery is carried out under local anaesthetic. We ensure that there will be absolutely no discomfort during the procedure. In a few instances, for example deeply impacted wisdom teeth, we will refer the patient to an oral surgeon for treatment under a general anaesthetic. Before any treatment is carried out, all of the options will be thoroughly explained to you.     

  • Why do wisdom teeth need to be removed?
  • What does the Procedure Involve?
  • What can I expect after the Procedure?
  • What Instructions should I follow after an extraction/Surgery?

Why do wisdom teeth need to be removed?

Wisdom teeth are a valuable asset to the mouth when they are healthy and properly positioned. However, problems often develop resulting in the need for extraction. If the jaw isn't large enough for the wisdom teeth they can become impacted, that is unable to fully erupt, or they become misaligned. Wisdom teeth may grow sideways, emerge only part way from the gum or remain trapped beneath the gum and bone.

Signs to look out for:
wisdom tooth illustration wisdom tooth illustration wisdom tooth illustration wisdom tooth illustration

 

Extraction of wisdom teeth is recommended when:

Wisdom teeth only partially erupt. This leaves an opening for bacteria to enter around the tooth and cause an infection. Pain (on one side of the jaw), swelling, jaw stiffness and general illness can result. The symptoms often occur every few weeks or months and then subside only to recur again and again. This cycle is repeated until the wisdom teeth are removed.

A cyst (fluid-filled sac) forms destroying surrounding structures such as bone or tooth roots.

There is a chance that poorly aligned wisdom teeth will damage adjacent teeth.

Need an emergency dentist! Contact 627 9970 and your call will be diverted to one of our on-call dentists.

dental oral surgery

What does the Procedure Involve?

Everybody has heard stories about wisdom teeth, mostly bad. We admit that wisdom teeth are a nuisance but leaving them to cause pain and further problems is worse. Removal can range from the extremely easy to the downright difficult. Using the Panex radiograph we carefully assess their position and degree of difficulty and advise how they may best be removed.

Not all wisdom teeth need removing. We would refer patients with badly positioned wisdom teeth to an oral surgeon for their removal under a general anaesthetic.

Straightforward wisdom teeth extractions are carried out under local anaesthetic. The gum is uncovered and a small amount of bone is removed to allow the tooth to be removed. Sutures are placed to aid healing. These are taken out approximately a week later. The procedure itself is totally painless though there will be a "squeaky" sensation as the tooth is loosened, not pain.

Patients are often pleasantly surprised at how easy the procedure is despite all the stories they have heard!

What can I expect after the Procedure?

Afterwards, there will be pain and swelling, the degree of which depends upon the difficulty of the removal. We usually advise patients to time the procedure to allow for a couple of quiet days for recuperation. You will not be bedridden but a restful 48 hours will greatly speed recovery.

The swelling will be at its worst approximately 24 hours after the procedure and will then gradually subside over the following days. Some limitation of opening of the jaw is normal for a few days.

We will give you detailed post-operative instructions, including the use of hot salt-water rinses the day after surgery, for the following week. Nurofen gives the best pain control (for those patients not allergic to aspirin).

What Instructions should I follow after an Extraction/Surgery?

  • Do not rinse or vigorously spit for 12 hours. This can dislodge the blood clot, cause bleeding and delay the healing.
  • Avoid exercise for the rest of the day. (Increased blood pressure can start bleeding)
  • If bleeding starts take a clean handkerchief, wet it, wring it out, fold it, place over the bleeding socket and bite firmly. Lie down and keep it there for at least 30 minutes. If bleeding persists, reapply the handkerchief and leave for a further two hours or so. If the bleeding persists call 09 627 9970.
  • Starting the next day, apply vigorous, hot salty mouthwashes as often as possible, especially after meals. One teaspoon of salt in hot water is all that is needed.
  • If painful, take your normal analgesic. Nurofen (for those not allergic to aspirin or asthmatic) is probably the most effective. If pain persists without any improvement after 2-3 days please call the practice.