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A whole lot of wisdom

  • Published at 12:42 pm April 23rd, 2015
A whole lot of wisdom

Wisdom teeth appear somewhere between the age of 16 to 23 and almost always have a flair for making a grand entry. Sometimes symptoms involve a dull ache while other times it’s a full-fledged throb that leaves you with a swollen face and stuffed mouth. However, if you’re lucky and your wisdom tooth is healthy and in the right position there is no cause for concern. It can grow right through without any intervention. Regardless, it’s always advisable to instantly get it checked by a dentist to see which course your tooth is taking.


Signs of wisdom

Pain in the jaw, a stiff feeling on either side of the mouth

Crowding of teeth due to the growth of the wisdom tooth

A swelling in the gum tissue that may be infected

Pain due to a tooth growing in an uncomfortable angle, one that rubs against your cheek/tongue/top or bottom of your mouth


What to do about it

Visit a dental clinic to get it checked. Depending on the severity of the situation, you may have to take the tooth out or even make an incision to make room for the tooth. Your dentist will order an X-ray before choosing a course of action.


Embracing wisdom

The tooth usually grows really deep into your mouth to the point that you have trouble cleaning it.

They erupt in a crooked, awkward fashion

There’s not enough space for your tooth to grow

Your jaw lacks space for the extra tooth growth


Dealing with the pain

The pain of wisdom tooth is often severe and may sound difficult to deal with. Given the right mouthwash, cleaning methods and antibiotics, you can reduce the pain to tolerable levels. You may use a mouthwash of moderately hot water with a teaspoon of salt to reduce soreness and inflammation. When gargling with this mixture, make sure you swish the water in and around your mouth so it can reach the areas that your toothbrush can’t.


Removal and what to expect

If you must have your tooth removed, make sure you thoroughly discuss the details. Ask your surgeon what kind of anaesthesia you will need and what the procedure will entail. Also, before the surgery, plan time off from work and school since you will need time to rest and recover. The surgery itself will take less than 45 minutes, and will entail anesthesia (local, general or IV sedation, depending on your tooth). They may have to cut the gums or teeth and there may be stitches as well. However, the stitches will heal and dissolve in a few days. After the surgery, it’s advisable to eat soft foods such as pasta or rice and drink a lot of fluids. Gently open and close your mouth to exercise the muscles and if you have swelling you can use an icepack on your face. 