Wisdom tooth removal

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Apr 01, 2012 10:38 AM GMT
    This is likely an imminent event for me coming up here pretty quickly. I have to schedule an appointment asap when the university clinic reopens for spring term on Monday to have a mouth pain investigated. It began over Spring break and I didn't think much of it at the time because it was fairly mild and I presumed it came from me chewing something too hard and it would go away in a couple days. But it hasn't gone away; in fact, the pain is getting worse. It's limited to the right side of my mouth, behind my last molar towards the jaw hinge. The pain comes and goes, it hurts especially when I yawn or chew food on that side. It's hard to see, but it looks like there is a small gap in the back after the second molar on the mandible; it's probably an impacted wisdom tooth. But I need to see a dentist to make sure it isn't something else.

    Confession time: I'm not mentally prepared for the thought of invasive medical procedures. I'm deathly horrified of surgery... icon_cry.gif Mulling on the possibility is making me hyperventilate and freak out and panic. I'll be clear: I'm not afraid of doctors or dentists. They're nice people. And I'm not afraid of getting teeth cleaned. BUT! The idea of having teeth pulled makes me want to pass out. Much less teeth that are impacted; buried beneath an intact layer of gum and that warrants cutting my mouth open to even reach the stupid vestigial piece of shit. Surgeries of any type don't sit well with me. I've never had one before. And this one movie keeps coming to mind where someone's sedative/anesthetic prematurely stopped working and they were fully conscious during their surgery! And the possibility of a dry socket complication...

    I'm seriously dreading this, but I know it's just gotta be done. What can I expect for procedure and recovery?
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    Apr 01, 2012 12:54 PM GMT
    Scotticus saidThis is likely an imminent event for me coming up here pretty quickly. I have to schedule an appointment asap when the university clinic reopens for spring term on Monday to have a mouth pain investigated. It began over Spring break and I didn't think much of it at the time because it was fairly mild and I presumed it came from me chewing something too hard and it would go away in a couple days. But it hasn't gone away; in fact, the pain is getting worse. It's limited to the right side of my mouth, behind my last molar towards the jaw hinge. The pain comes and goes, it hurts especially when I yawn or chew food on that side. It's hard to see, but it looks like there is a small gap in the back after the second molar on the mandible; it's probably an impacted wisdom tooth. But I need to see a dentist to make sure it isn't something else.

    Confession time: I'm not mentally prepared for the thought of invasive medical procedures. I'm deathly horrified of surgery... icon_cry.gif Mulling on the possibility is making me hyperventilate and freak out and panic. I'll be clear: I'm not afraid of doctors or dentists. They're nice people. And I'm not afraid of getting teeth cleaned. BUT! The idea of having teeth pulled makes me want to pass out. Much less teeth that are impacted; buried beneath an intact layer of gum and that warrants cutting my mouth open to even reach the stupid vestigial piece of shit. Surgeries of any type don't sit well with me. I've never had one before. And this one movie keeps coming to mind where someone's sedative/anesthetic prematurely stopped working and they were fully conscious during their surgery! And the possibility of a dry socket complication...

    I'm seriously dreading this, but I know it's just gotta be done. What can I expect for procedure and recovery?


    I feel you on this one.
    I had 1 that was acting up. The oral surgeon and dentist both agreed that the other 3 would soon follow. I opted to have all 4 done at once.

    Hopefully you will be asleep during the procedure. I wasn't. I didn't feel pain, but didn't like knowing what was going on.

    As for recovery, there will be about 3 days of your mouth tasting and being bloody. (If you are taking aspirin daily for either gym pain, or heart health, stop about 5 days prior to surgery. This will help stop the excess bleeding.)
    Also go out and buy inexpensive pillow cases. There WILL be blood because you will have packing in your mouth for a day at least.

    I had stitches so it took a bit longer. The worst was the fear and the soreness afterwards.

    You will be fine. Your mind makes it worse then it really is. I promise. icon_wink.gif

    Good luck.
    Tristan
  • bischero

    Posts: 847

    Apr 01, 2012 1:01 PM GMT
    Just make sure you flush out your gums after the surgery. Very important so your gums don't get infected!!

    You'll be fine! icon_smile.gif
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Apr 01, 2012 1:27 PM GMT
    Talk to the dentist about your fears and seriously consider anesthesia for the procedure. I now wear dentures and had to have the last of my teeth removed and implants placed. The oral surgeon put me under for the operations and it was a great relief. There was some pain afterwards but it subsided quickly. I sincerely think that the trauma was less because I was not aware of anything while he was working. Dentists understand this and you should not be shy about bringing it up.
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    Apr 01, 2012 1:28 PM GMT
    My friend:

    I understand your fear. The thought of any medical procedure creeps me out too. But I can promise you -- having your wisdom teeth pulled -- it's nothing.

    In my case, they just numbed me up and then pulled them out. That's it. You don't feel anything. It's easy. In and out.

    They'll give you a prescription for pain medication, which you'll get right after the procedure. The medication works great. With me, there was also some bleeding about 45 min. afterwards. I'm told this is typical. It stops right away.

    Believe me when I tell you that all your fear is in your head.

    When you see your dentist, tell him/her that you're afraid. I feel certain you'll be reassured that it's no big deal.

    So don't worry !!! Getting past your fear is by far the hardest part !!!




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    Apr 01, 2012 1:30 PM GMT
    Don't worry about the surgery, you'll be in total oblivion until it's over. As the other comments warned you, it's the aftermath that's the problem.
    When I had mine out, at about your age, my mother brought me home afterwards and relied on my drugged state to ask lots of questions.
    If you've been keeping any secrets from your caregiver you won't be anymore.
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    Apr 01, 2012 1:32 PM GMT
    Wisdom tooth removal makes you a fool! Ever wonder why those jacked up grilled EUR reporters are so credible? Cause they've got all their teeth! icon_eek.gificon_idea.gif
  • monet

    Posts: 1093

    Apr 01, 2012 1:40 PM GMT
    I had mine done with local anesthetic - all four at once. It wasn't bad at all except for the sounds of the drilling and the yanking.

    At least you can drive home by yourself when you're done.
  • okcomputer201...

    Posts: 132

    Apr 01, 2012 1:41 PM GMT
    I don't know if you can tell from my profile pic, but I have MASSIVE teeth. My wisdom teeth were huge and I thought that their removal was going to be a nightmare

    I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly I recovered. The first two days were the toughest. Plan on resting. Get yourself some movies, tons of cream of mushroom soup, and a close friend or two to cheer you up. Honestly, I've had hangovers that were more unpleasant than the two days following my wisdom teeth removal. You'll be fine!
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    Apr 01, 2012 1:46 PM GMT
    Uberr_Bizzaro_O saidWisdom tooth removal makes you a fool! Ever wonder why those jacked up grilled EUR reporters are so credible? Cause they've got all their teeth! icon_eek.gificon_idea.gif


    Well, I'd opt to keep them if I could. But given how they are coming in, it poses serious infection risks because they'll be too difficult to clean properly. Removal in this case would be necessary.
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    Apr 01, 2012 1:57 PM GMT
    The fear is of the "unknown" more than anything. Just realize that most of the horror stories you hear are from people who "felt well enough" after surgery that they didn't follow the directions. The after care is most important. I had all 4 of mine remove (cut out) and I'm so glad I did. A couple rules to follow and you will be fine:

    1) BEFORE your surgery ask your dentist to keep your teeth for you. You won't regret it.

    2) For the 24 hours after your surgery, DO NOT SPIT OR SUCK. When your mouth fills up with blood and saliva, get a bowl and put a washcloth or stack of paper towels in it. Lean forward to let your mouth drain into the bowl. It will be a bloody, gross mess so the washcloth will help keep it from splashing. Not spitting or sucking will help your sockets clot so that the bone isn't exposed.

    Dry Sockets is your enemy.

    3) Take your medicine EXACTLY as instructed for the 5-8 days of your prescription, including waking up at night to take it. Keeping the pain at bay will make a huge difference. Once the pain sets in from missing a dose, it will take several hours before the pain subsides. Days 3-5 are when you are most sore, especially if you have stitches so don't let up on the pain meds just because it feels "not so bad" on day 2.

    4) When you go in for your follow up, your doctor will give you a syringe. USE IT AFTER EVERY MEAL. It will keep the risk of infection down and will reduce the bad breath you'll have. And you will have bad breath for a bit.

    Good luck. You'll be fine. On a pain scale from 1 - no pain to 10 - deathly pain, this is about a 5.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Apr 01, 2012 1:57 PM GMT
    I've had about everything else done with my teeth.... even yanking 4 of them before I had braces.... but never had my wisdom teeth removed. I've heard alot of my friends talk about it, however. I'm sure you will be fine.
    Ask questions from the oral surgeon, approach it logically, not emotionally.
    You will be fine.
  • fmrhugger

    Posts: 199

    Apr 01, 2012 2:10 PM GMT
    I had 2 impacted lowers removed when I was a freshman. Surgery was under anesthesia. ate through a straw for a week, uncomfortable for 2 more weeks. no real pain though, just uncomfortable. More comfortable than the pre-op pain of the teeth.
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    Apr 01, 2012 2:13 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidI've had about everything else done with my teeth.... even yanking 4 of them before I had braces.... but never had my wisdom teeth removed. I've heard alot of my friends talk about it, however. I'm sure you will be fine.
    Ask questions from the oral surgeon, approach it logically, not emotionally.
    You will be fine.
    Four? Gulp. I'm scheduled to lose one in the lower front and get braces started in two weeks. It's gonna be a party!icon_eek.gif

    To the OP: its a really common. The mistake I made 20 years ago was being a big baby and talking the surgeon into extending the prescription for percodan for the second week (only had three for them to yank.) The withdrawal was worse than the surgery. Major sinus problems for two weeks.

    I suspect you won't want to put this off any longer if you can avoid it.
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    Apr 01, 2012 2:21 PM GMT
    bischero saidJust make sure you flush out your gums after the surgery. Very important so your gums don't get infected!!


    I was advised not to have anything (liquids, food or medication) until a few hours after the surgery. I'd be concerned to introduce anything so early after going through surgery since wisdom teeth roots are so close to the sinus passages.

    My wisdom tooth was a problematic one. The x-rays didn't show that the tooth was fused to my jaw bone so the dentist was trying to yank it out for three hours (almost fell asleep) before he got another dentist to come and help pull it out (I had a local). And since they didn't know the tooth was fused out came a hefty chunk of jaw bone too! They were just as surprised as I was.
    But I was fine during and after the procedure but once the local anesthetic wore off it felt like a grenade went off in my mouth and that feeling lasted for around 3 hours. I took a couple prescribed pain killers as soon as I could.

    After the pain subsided that day and getting used to the bloody saliva filled pads (they were the worst part) it was fine and I didn't even use pain killers the next day.

    You're not going to feel a thing but be prepared once the anesthetic wears off. Try not to open your mouth so wide, too much movement can make stitches loosen and promote excessive bleeding. Take the day off, you'll want to be in bed or watching a movie.
  • omgazn

    Posts: 342

    Apr 01, 2012 2:23 PM GMT
    Well just be lucky you aren't getting your teeth remove on a moving ship. I remember the doctor said Ooops.
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    Apr 01, 2012 3:57 PM GMT
    I had a wisdom tooth once.. After the surgery the right side of my face swells up for a week.. Ice could help a little bit

    Good luck icon_wink.gif
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    Apr 01, 2012 4:12 PM GMT
    My biggest irrational fear is one of dentists. For years, I'd been hearing that my top wisdom teeth had to come out because they were impacted, and finally, last year, I did it. It was fine. I chose to be sedated and I never felt a thing and I don't recall a thing, even about how I got home.

    My best advice is this: Avoid the after-procedure painkillers if you can. I did just fine with the prescription Advil and never once took the Percoset that was given to me. The pain killers will slow your recovery and can bring on nausea, so if you can avoid them, by all means do and your recovery will be much quicker for it.

    Good luck! You'll be fine.
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    Apr 01, 2012 4:29 PM GMT
    I told them I was afraid, so they gave me lots and lots of freezing and some gas too.

    It was actually really easy. Not painful and I was zoned out. More like watching a video of what I was seeing.

    I had a really easy time of recovery as well. I didn't get wiped out like most people, and my meds covered the pain.

    I hope your visit is easy too!
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    Apr 01, 2012 4:31 PM GMT
    You'll do great!

    My recovery was really smooth- I even worked out 6 hours after I got my wisdoms teeth out.

    Everyone is different, but I didn't need my pain killers, I used Advil instead
    Also, sleeping in a recliner prevents you from swelling up! No one could even tell I got my wisdom teeth out!

    Good luck!
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    Apr 01, 2012 4:52 PM GMT
    no straws! LOL....actually, i've had the general anesthesia when mine were pulled. feel free to msg me for any specifics
  • runnermtl

    Posts: 129

    Apr 01, 2012 5:00 PM GMT
    Most important piece of advice: find someone in your area who has had theirs removed and ask them to refer you to their dentist. I had mine done in two sessions (one single one then the remaining three a few years later.) Ideally you get them done all at once, but the first one was so awful I didn't want to go back.

    I changed cities and kept having problems, so I decided to have the remaining three taken out. This time I was smart and asked around... and the whole thing was a breeze. Well, maybe not a breeze, but definitely not something to worry about. The dentist my friend recommended to me did a great job and I barely felt a thing. It doesn't take too long to heal up.

    Good luck!
  • dancedancekj

    Posts: 1761

    Apr 01, 2012 5:41 PM GMT
    Wow, I don't even need to say anything, you guys covered all aspects very well. I'm very impressed at the amount of information and the great experiences you guys have had with 3rd molar extractions icon_smile.gif

    Scotticus, make sure you have them check out that it is the wisdom tooth for sure that is given you pain. It sounds like it could possibly be an infection of the wisdom tooth under the gum (pericornitis) but it sounds like it could also be a problem with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).
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    Apr 01, 2012 6:08 PM GMT
    Don't worry about it. I had all 4 done at the same time and I was put under. It seemed like I was asleep for maybe 5 minutes. They gave me drugs for the pain after (percocet I think) but it really wasn't necessary. The most annoying thing was when the stitches started coming out. They were the ones that dissolved so I was spitting out stitches for days once everything healed.
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    Apr 01, 2012 6:09 PM GMT
    I had all four of mine extracted the same day. All I remember after the surgery is fighting with my dad telling him I could get out myself. I managed to get out of the car...luckily I fell on our lawn. Wouldn't that be fun had I fallen onto the street or a sidewalk? icon_confused.gif

    For awhile I was eating pudding, shakes, jello, plain soups. That time of year was when people were having their sweet 16 things and graduation parties. Couldn't do much eating. Recovery wasn't so bad though.