After wisdom teeth removal, it's crucial to be aware of signs that might indicate complications, even for patients currently undergoing other dental treatments like Invisalign. Key indicators of issues post-surgery include persistent or worsening pain, swelling that doesn't reduce after a few days, and signs of infection such as fever, pus from the extraction site, or an unpleasant taste in the mouth. While mild discomfort and some swelling are normal, anything beyond that warrants immediate attention from a dentist.
Swelling that worsens after two or three days, a bad taste in your mouth that cannot be eliminated by rinsing with salt water, inflow of pus or oozing from the socket, and persistent numbness or loss of sensation are all signs that you may have complications after wisdom teeth removal. After wisdom teeth are removed, blood clots form over the extraction sites to help the mouth heal. Alveolar osteitis, or dry alveolitis, occurs if this blood clot breaks off, leaving the nerve below the gum exposed to air or food debris. The researchers surveyed more than 1,200 patients who had teeth extracted and found that only 41% of the participants had dry alveolitis.
Patients who smoked were more likely to develop dry alveolitis than those who didn't. According to the National Health Service (NHS), dry alveolitis can occur three to five days after wisdom teeth are removed. Signs include throbbing or sharp pain at the extraction site. It's essential that you contact your dentist or oral surgeon if you start to feel this sharp or throbbing pain so that they can clean the extraction site and cover the exposed extraction site.
Nerve injury is much less common and is usually caused by bruising on the nerves that are located very close to the roots of the lower wisdom teeth. In a study published in the American Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, researchers surveyed 101 patients who had their wisdom teeth removed. The dentist or surgeon will try to minimize the chance of nerve damage when removing the wisdom tooth and should inform you about the risk of complications before the procedure. Although much less common than dry alveolitis, injury to sections of a nerve called the trigeminal nerve is another possible complication of wisdom tooth extraction.
It is estimated that between 5% and 37% of people have only a few wisdom teeth or, in some cases, none. Pain and swelling are quite common after tooth extractions, especially during the first one to three days after wisdom teeth have been extracted. As a result, your dentist may suggest that you have your wisdom teeth removed even if you don't have any symptoms. Wisdom tooth extraction is usually done with local anesthesia, intravenous sedation, or general anesthesia, depending on your specific needs.
Some patients don't need to have their wisdom teeth removed when their third molars come out in the correct position. Your dentist or surgeon will discuss with you the possible complications of removing wisdom teeth and recommend you to reduce the risk, including caring for the extraction site after the procedure to ensure proper healing. However, wisdom teeth often grow at an angle or become fully or partially trapped (impacted) in the jaw or under gum tissue. After your wisdom tooth extraction appointment, you need to clear your schedule so you can go home and rest.
The extraction of wisdom teeth is the extraction of the third molars, the four permanent adult teeth found in the back of the mouth, in the upper and lower jaws. Follow your aftercare instructions and contact your office if you are concerned about any side effects or complications from wisdom tooth extraction. See your dentist if you have signs of infection after your wisdom teeth have been removed or if you are bleeding profusely at the extraction site.