Wisdom tooth

Wisdom tooth/teeth treatments in Frankston

Wisdom teeth are so called because they are the last teeth to come in — usually between ages 17 and 21 — presumably the age when a person gains maturity and thus wisdom.

Often there is not enough room in your mouth for wisdom teeth, so they do not grow normally. When this happens, your wisdom teeth are said to be ‘impacted’. Wisdom teeth are usually impacted forwards into the tooth in front or backwards into your jaw bone.
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Why do I need this surgery?

An impacted wisdom tooth can cause a number of problems, so it may be necessary to have it removed. The most common problems are:

  • Repeated infections in the gum surrounding your wisdom tooth. This causes pain and swelling.
  • Food packing, which causes decay in either your wisdom tooth or the tooth in front.
  • Cyst formation around your wisdom tooth. You get a cyst when fluid fills the sac that normally surrounds a developing wisdom tooth.
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Getting your wisdom teeth out

Getting your wisdom teeth out is a pretty common occurrence; many people have the surgery as teenagers or young adults. That being said, it is still a major procedure that requires a decent amount of recovery time. So before you head to your appointment, here are five key things everybody should know before the extraction.
Bring a buddy

Make sure you bring someone with you to the dentist or oral maxillofacial surgeon's office. This is not just for moral support, but because you will be medicated during the surgery as well.

First, you will receive a local anaesthetic to numb the area where the tooth will be removed. Then, depending on the number of teeth you are having removed or if the tooth is impacted or erupted you may receive a general anaesthetic which will cause you to sleep through the surgery.

Everyone reacts to the anaesthesia differently, but you won't feel like yourself right away and you certainly won't be able to drive yourself home. Typically, the effects of the medication will wear off in a few hours.

Keep your head raised

Swelling is a natural reaction after surgery. Typically, it reaches its peak about 24 hours after the procedure and then starts to subside. In addition to placing a cold compact on the swollen area, you should keep your head raised. This will pull any fluids away from your head and keep the swelling under control.

Get plenty of rest

Chances are you'll need some pain medication after the anaesthesia wears off. You should take it easy while using these sometimes heavy drugs, so why not use it as an excuse to catch up on some rest? Getting plenty of sleep will only help the healing process.

Stock up on soft foods

It's important not to aggravate the treated area so it can properly heal and avoid infection. You should keep your food choices limited to soft things like applesauce and lukewarm soups. So if you haven't already, be sure to stock your cupboards and refrigerator with the right foods.

Skip the toothbrush for a day

As much as you'll want to clean your mouth after the surgery, you have to resist the urge to brush your teeth for the first day. Even rinsing and spitting is a no-no. If you really need some relief, take a damp cloth and wipe your tongue and around the inside of your mouth. Just be sure to avoid your stitches. You can also take some gauze to absorb any blood.
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