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Wisdom Teeth Removal

Man in dental chairThe final set of molars (back, chewing teeth) to develop are what we typically refer to as ‘wisdom teeth’. They’re located at the back of the mouth behind the second set of molars and tend to erupt sometime during the teens to late twenties.

Unfortunately because of their location, wisdom teeth are at a higher risk for infection. As such, proactively removing them may be recommended.

Symptoms of Unhealthy Wisdom Teeth

How can you tell whether something is wrong with your wisdom teeth? You (or your teen) may be experiencing symptoms of

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Pressure
  • Tooth crowding
  • New decay
  • Gum infections

Although wisdom teeth begin developing during teenage, they can continue forming until a person is young adult.

During a wisdom tooth evaluation, we’ll take a full-mouth 3D X-ray or scan of your full jaw. This image allows us to assess the full wisdom teeth as well as the surrounding structures.

If your tooth has partially erupted, it may already present symptoms of decay or periodontal infections. The limited space makes oral hygiene especially challenging, even if you tend to have fairly good brushing and flossing habits.

Depending on how the wisdom tooth is situated and if it’s impacted within the jaw, we’ll also need to check on the health of your adjacent teeth. If we deem that the wisdom teeth are a liability for your overall oral health, we will recommend having them removed.

We typically recommend a wisdom tooth exam sometime during your child’s mid-teen years and again before heading off to University. If there are no concerns we can monitor their teeth from visit to visit, then interjecting if any problems begin to arise.

A wisdom tooth extraction can vary between simple to more surgical. Depending on your comfort level, it can also be performed under local anaesthesia, dental sedation or even general anaesthesia. Following your oral surgery, we may place you on a couple of medications to ensure a healthy recovery. Be sure to follow your home care instructions to avoid unwanted side-effects or discomfort. Particularly when it comes to how to clean your mouth and what foods to avoid.

Plan to stock up on softer foods for the first few days. Gelatine, pudding, applesauce and similar textures will be easier to eat early on during recovery. Staying hydrated is also important.

For the first day you’ll want to have a cold and warm compress to alternate and apply to the side of your face. These will ease swelling and discomfort. A mild pain reliever can also be beneficial.

Not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth extracted. But if a tooth is partially impacted to where it is consistently prone to bacterial buildup, removing it is usually best. The same can be said for third molars that are pressing into their neighbours, due to the damage that can occur.

Wisdom Tooth Consultations

Do you or your teen need wisdom tooth removal St Leonards? Contact us to arrange an appointment.

Any invasive or surgical procedure may carry risks. Before moving forward, it is recommended that you seek a second opinion from an appropriately licensed medical professional.


Wisdom Teeth Removal St Leonards, Crows Nest, Naremburn NSW | 02 9066 0100