Are your wisdom teeth coming in? Or have you had wisdom teeth for some time with no obvious symptoms? Either way, it's important that you get them taken out. Centuries ago, wisdom teeth were useful because tooth loss was common. Getting a third set of molars as an adult was actually helpful. With the evolution of dental care, most people today have no need or room in their mouth for a third set of molars. If you don't address the issue, your wisdom teeth will crowd your other teeth, which could damage your gums and lead to gum disease. You may be nervous about the procedure. Here are three common questions that patients ask, along with general answers:
Do I need anesthesia? Many dentists leave it up to the patient to decide whether anesthesia is necessary. The alternative is gas that will keep you awake but relieve anxiety and pain. That's commonly known as "laughing gas." If you choose the gas, you will be awake and will know what's going on. You will hear the drills and other tools that the dentist is using and you may even feel some pressure if the dentist pushes on your mouth.
With anesthesia, you'll be asleep, so you won't see, hear, or feel anything. However, when you wake up, you will be drowsy and a little out of it. You may have a hard time staying awake the rest of the day. You'll need to consider your anxiety about the procedure and how drowsy you want to be after the procedure.
Will I bleed a lot? Bleeding is common after wisdom teeth removals, especially in the period right after the procedure is over. Your dentist will likely give you some gauze to chew on. That gauze will put pressure on the wound and help stop the bleeding. Some people just bleed more than others, though. If bleeding is a big problem, you also may want to put a moist tea bag on the wound. It will have the same effect as the gauze. However, tea also contains some natural constrictors that will help stop the bleeding.
What can I eat? Your dentist will give you specific instructions on what to eat. Before the procedure, though, you may want to go to the store and stock up on items. In the first day or two, you will likely be limited to liquid and extremely soft foods like smoothies, yogurt, and ice cream. You also may be prohibited from using a straw because the pressure of sucking may reopen the wound. After a couple of days have passed, you may be allowed to venture into more solid, but still soft, foods, like mashed potatoes and scrambled eggs. Just remember to cut your food thoroughly, no matter how soft it is. You'll need to chew as little as possible.
Before your procedure, take the time to ask your dentist any questions that you may have. He or she will likely be happy to answer all your questions and help you feel more prepared for the procedure. To learn more, visit New Image Cosmetic & Family Dentistry.