Wisdom teeth surgery How is it done and what to do after
Wisdom teeth surgery How is it done and what to do after
2020-01-01

How to deal with Sensitive teeth?

How to deal with Sensitive teeth

Your wisdom teeth are a set of four adult teeth located in the back corners of your mouth. Wisdom teeth grow in usually between the ages of 17 and 24. Hence why they are called wisdom teeth in the first place: for the wise young adults who produce them.

Most anthropologists believe wisdom teeth were necessary for our caveman ancestors, who lived on a diet of raw roots, leaves, meat, and nuts. But since then, we evolved to cook our food and use utensils that otherwise cut, crush, and mash it into manageable pieces. In other words, modern humans just don’t need wisdom teeth anymore.

An oral and maxillofacial surgeon or your dentist can remove (extract) a wisdom tooth. The procedure often can be done in the dentist's or surgeon's office. You may have the surgery in the hospital, especially if you are having all your wisdom teeth pulled at one time or if you are at high risk for complications.

How do you know if your wisdom teeth should be removed?


How do you know if your wisdom teeth should be removed

When our modern diets evolved, so too did our jawlines. Unfortunately for many of us, our wisdom teeth never got the memo. Our downsized mandibles no longer have room to comfortably fit wisdom teeth, but the majority of people still develop them. And it is this one step in our human development that causes many of us to seek wisdom tooth pain relief.

For some people, wisdom teeth coming in turns out to be no big deal; they experience no wisdom tooth pain or other problems because their teeth erupt fully and without issue. In other cases, wisdom teeth don’t have enough room to come in normally, if at all. Make an appointment with your dentist if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Red or swollen gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Jaw pain
  • Swelling around the jaw
  • Difficulty opening your mouth

Impacted and partially impacted wisdom teeth


When a wisdom tooth forms in the mouth but never breaks through the gums, it is referred to as impacted. One that emerges only part way is called a partially impacted wisdom tooth. In both cases, the tooth often grows at an angle because of lack of space in the mouth. This becomes the source of many potential problems, including:

  • Wisdom tooth pain
  • Trapped food leading to decay
  • Damage to nearby teeth or the surrounding jaw bone
  • Bacterial growth along the opening in the gumline of a partially impacted tooth
  • Development of a cyst around wisdom teeth

Removing Wisdom Teeth


Removing Wisdom Teeth

Removing a tooth that's fully visible in the mouth is a fairly simple procedure; it involves numbing with a local anesthetic, and after a bit of work around the gum, the tooth is out. However, this is usually not the case with wisdom teeth. Located in the back of your mouth, most wisdom teeth don't have enough room to come in properly and are referred to as impacted. In fact, nine out of 10 people have at least one impacted tooth.

Extracting impacted teeth usually requires the removal of some bone and gum tissue, making the procedure more involved than removing teeth that are positioned normally. And because all four teeth are usually removed at once, most offices recommend some type of sedation during the procedure.

Sedatives and Anesthetics


Sedatives and Anesthetics

Before deciding on the best option of anesthesia for your extractions, you and your dentist will need to discuss your anxiety level and the procedure's complexity. Consider the most common types of sedation used in dental offices today:

  • Local anesthesia is the numbing medication injected into the area of the mouth to be treated. This type of anesthesia blocks the sensation of pain during the procedure.
  • Conscious sedation is typically achieved by taking an oral medication, along with an anti-anxiety pill, shortly before the procedure. The medication will make you drowsy and, if given in larger doses, may cause you to fall asleep during the procedure. You'll need a ride to and from the dental office when taking this type of medication.
  • Nitrous oxide or "laughing gas" is a controlled mix of nitrous oxide and oxygen that you breathe through a mask placed over your nose. This allows you to feel relaxed and less nervous about the treatment. The effects of the gas wear off quickly, allowing you to safely drive home after the procedure. Oral medication and the nitrous oxide are frequently used together, in which case you will not be able to drive yourself.
  • Intravenous (IV) sedation, is administered by taking medication orally or through a vein. IV sedation works quickly, and although you are conscious and capable of responding to your dentist's visual signals, you won't remember much about your appointment. Because Intravenous sedation does not provide pain relief, it is used in combination with local anesthesia. You'll be groggy and need a ride home after the appointment.
  • General anesthesia is a combination of oral and IV medications that sedate you to a level where you are placed in a level of unconsciousness. Those who are heavily sedated may reach stages of complete unconsciousness. The best part is, once you're fully awake, you won't remember anything about the procedure.

How Well It Works


Wisdom tooth removal usually is effective in preventing:

  • Crowding of the back teeth.
  • A wisdom tooth becoming stuck in the jaw (impacted) and never breaking through the gums.
  • Red, swollen, and painful gums caused by a flap of skin around a wisdom tooth that has only partially come in.
  • Gum disease and tooth decay in the wisdom tooth, which may be harder to clean than other teeth, or in the teeth and jaw in the area of the wisdom tooth.

What To Expect After Surgery


In most cases, the recovery period lasts only a few days. Take painkillers as prescribed by your dentist or oral surgeon. The following tips will help speed your recovery.

  • Bite gently on the gauze pad periodically, and change pads as they become soaked with blood. Call your dentist or oral surgeon if you still have bleeding 24 hours after your surgery.
  • While your mouth is numb, be careful not to bite the inside of your cheek or lip, or your tongue.
  • Do not lie flat. This may prolong bleeding. Prop up your head with pillows.
  • Try using an ice pack on the outside of your cheek. Apply for 15 to 20 minutes at a time for the first 24 hours. You can use moist heat—such as a face cloth soaked in warm water and wrung out—for the following 2 or 3 days.
  • Relax after surgery. Physical activity may increase bleeding.
  • Eat soft foods, such as gelatin, pudding, or a thin soup. Gradually add solid foods to your diet as healing progresses.
  • Do not use a straw for the first few days. Sucking on a straw can loosen the blood clot and delay healing.
  • After 24 hours, gently rinse your mouth with warm salt water several times a day to reduce swelling and relieve pain. You can make your own salt water by mixing 1 tsp (5 g) of salt in a medium-sized glass (8 fl oz (250 mL)) of warm water. Do not rinse hard. This can loosen the blood clot and delay healing.
  • Do not smoke for at least 24 hours after your surgery. The sucking motion can loosen the clot and delay healing. Also, smoking decreases the blood supply and can bring germs and contaminants to the surgery area.
  • Avoid rubbing the area with your tongue or touching it with your fingers.
  • Continue to brush your teeth and tongue carefully.

Your dentist will remove the stitches after a few days, if needed.

Avoiding dry socket wisdom teeth

Avoiding dry socket wisdom teeth

You might be surprised to hear that the hole takes several months to fully close after tooth extraction. Your dentist will also advise you to avoid certain activities for a period of time because of the risk of dry socket. The name makes it sound pretty innocuous, but it is actually very painful and potentially dangerous.

After wisdom tooth surgery, a blood clot forms in the hole in the bone where the tooth was removed — otherwise known as the socket. This blood clot protects the exposed bone and nerves, but if it dislodges or dissolves in the days following surgery, your bone and nerves are left exposed to food, fluids, and bacterial infections.

To help prevent dry socket after wisdom tooth removal, avoid these activities for about two weeks post surgery:

  • Drinking from a straw
  • Smoking
  • Spitting
  • Strenuous exercise

Tips for home care

It is essential to keep the wound clean while it is healing. Because people still need to eat and drink, food can easily get stuck in the area where the tooth was removed. This can make keeping the wound area clean a bit challenging.

Try the following to help keep the wound clean:

  • using an antiseptic mouth rinse to prevent infection.
  • rinsing with warm water and salt to reduce swelling and soothe sore gums
  • raising the head when sleeping to feel more comfortable

As well as pain, some people will feel tired after having their wisdom teeth out and might choose to avoid exercise for a few days after the surgery.

What can you eat?

Eating soft or liquid foods can help to prevent damage to wounds. Some examples are:

  • soup
  • jello
  • soft noodles
  • eggs
  • mashed banana

For the first few days after surgery, avoid foods that need chewing, such as sticky candy or chewing gum as these may get stuck and can cause pain and damage to the healing wounds. Also avoid hard, crunchy food, such as chips, pretzels, nuts, and seeds, as well as hot or spicy foods.

If one or two wisdom teeth have been removed from the same side of the mouth, it may be possible to chew on the opposite side of the mouth after 24 hours.

How long does it take to recover from a wisdom teeth removal?


Recovery from wisdom teeth removal usually takes a couple of weeks. Some people might need stitches to help close the wound. The dental surgeon will usually remove the stitches after about 1 week. Sometimes, the surgery causes bruising, swelling, and pain, which will also require time to heal. The healing process can be broken down into the following stages:

  • First 24 hours: Blood clots will form.
  • 2 to 3 days: Swelling of the mouth and cheeks should improve.
  • 7 days: A dentist can remove any stitches that remain.
  • 7 to 10 days: Jaw stiffness and soreness should go away.
  • 2 weeks: Any mild bruising on the face should heal.

Recovery time will be different for everyone. If blood clots become dislodged from the wound, or the wound becomes infected, recovery may take longer.

Risks


Though this surgery is a common procedure and usually goes well, wisdom teeth removal complications can occur. Anywhere from 2.6% to 30.9% of patients experience complications from wisdom tooth removal. Being prepared for these possibilities is key to appropriately handling or even preventing them. Here are five of the most common complications to help you jump-start a discussion with your dentist.

Pain and Swelling

Pain and Swelling

Pain and swelling are expected after an extraction, though the extent varies by person. In a study, men reported less pain than women. Though pain is subjective, the study cited that, in the first day following surgery, 53% of patients had mild pain and 47% had severe pain. Only 15.2% had severe pain within one week after surgery. The amount of pain and swelling may be connected to how long the surgery takes. Your dentist may advise taking over-the-counter pain medications, eating a soft diet and avoiding strenuous physical activity to relieve your symptoms.

Lip Numbness

The wisdom teeth are close to the inferior alveolar nerve running through the jaw. If the nerve becomes damaged during an extraction, it can lead to lip numbness. This complication can spontaneously resolve, and does within two months in about 96% of patients. Your surgeon will minimize the possibility of nerve damage while removing the tooth or teeth and will inform you of your risks for this complication prior to surgery.

Other complications

You may also experience:

  • Bleeding that won't stop for about 24 hours.
  • Difficulty with or pain from opening your jaw (trismus).
  • Slow-healing gums.
  • Damage to existing dental work, such as crowns or bridges, or to roots of a nearby tooth.
  • A painful inflammation called dry socket, which happens if the protective blood clot is lost too soon.

There are many reasons why your teeth might hurt, but one of the most common is sensitive teeth pain. If you’ve ever winced after an unwelcome twinge of sharp pain when you eat or drink something cold or hot, sweet or sour, this could be one of the symptoms of tooth sensitivity.

To find out what’s causing your tooth pain you should visit your dentist for a check-up and ask about tooth sensitivity. Your dentist will be able to identify the cause of your sensitive teeth symptoms and rule out other causes of tooth pain, such as tooth decay, infection, disease or injury.

DO I HAVE SENSITIVE TEETH?


DO I HAVE SENSITIVE TEETH

If you feel a short, sharp twinge of pain when you eat or drink something cold, hot, sweet or sour, or if it’s painful when you brush your teeth, then you could have sensitive teeth. There are other reasons why your teeth might hurt.

You may have ‘ouch’ moments when:

  • You’re having a hot drink or eating an ice-cream
  • You’re eating something sour or very sweet
  • You bite down on something
  • An ache or pain persists well after the initial twinges

What causes tooth sensitivity?


Many factors may lead to the development of tooth sensitivity, including:

  • Brushing too hard: Over time, brushing too hard or using a hard-bristled toothbrush can wear down enamel and cause the dentin to be exposed. It can also cause recession of the gums (the gum tissue pulls away from the teeth).
  • Recession of the gums: As gums move away from a tooth because of conditions such as periodontal disease, the root surface becomes exposed.
  • Gum disease: Inflamed and sore gum tissue may cause sensitivity because of the loss of supporting ligaments, which exposes the root surface that leads directly to the nerve of the tooth.
  • Cracked teeth: Chipped or broken teeth may fill with bacteria from plaque and enter the pulp, causing inflammation.
  • Teeth grinding: grinding or clenching your teeth may wear down the enamel and expose underlying dentin.
  • Tooth whitening products or toothpaste with baking soda and peroxide: These products are major contributors to tooth sensitivity.
  • Age: Tooth sensitivity is highest between the ages of 25 and 30.
  • Plaque buildup: The presence of plaque on the root surfaces can cause sensitivity.
  • Mouthwash use: Long-term use of some mouthwashes. Some over-the-counter mouthwashes contain acids that can worsen tooth sensitivity if you have exposed dentin (the middle layer of the tooth). The acids further damage the dentin layer of the tooth. If you have dentin sensitivity, ask your dentist about the use of a neutral fluoride solution.
  • Acidic foods: Regular consumption of foods with a high acid content, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, pickles and tea, can cause enamel erosion.
  • Recent routine dental procedures: Sensitivity can occur following teeth cleaning, root planing, crown placement and tooth restoration. Sensitivity caused by dental procedures is temporary and usually disappears in 4 to 6 weeks.

Is it normal to have sensitivity after a filling?


Sometimes you may have tooth sensitivity after a filling, but this usually clears up fairly quickly. Check back with your dentist if the sensitivity still hasn’t gone away a few weeks after your filling.

Treatment


Treatment

Sensitive teeth can be treated. The type of treatment will depend on what is causing the sensitivity. Your dentist may suggest one of a variety of treatments:

  • Desensitizing toothpaste. This contains compounds that help block transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve, and usually requires several applications before the sensitivity is reduced.
  • Fluoride gel. An in-office technique which strengthens tooth enamel and reduces the transmission of sensations.
  • A crown, inlay or bonding. These may be used to correct a flaw or decay that results in sensitivity.
  • Surgical gum graft. If gum tissue has been lost from the root, this will protect the root and reduce sensitivity.
  • Root canal. If sensitivity is severe and persistent and cannot be treated by other means, your dentist may recommend this treatment to eliminate the problem.

Proper oral hygiene is the key to preventing sensitive-tooth pain. Ask your dentist if you have any questions about your daily oral hygiene routine or concerns about tooth sensitivity.

11 Home Remedies to Relieve Sensitive Teeth


Coconut Oil Rinse

Coconut Oil Rinse

 

This method involves using the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of coconut oil to reduce the pain felt by the tooth. To use this method, you would need a tablespoon of coconut oil. Pour a tablespoon of virgin coconut oil into your mouth and swish for about 20 minutes. Then spit out the oil and brush your teeth afterward. Ensure that you do this daily, especially in the morning.

Onions

Onions are antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory, and can fight oral pathogens as well as treat tooth pain. You need a piece of onion to chew on for a few minutes, or place it on the affected area and leave it for about 10 minutes. Do this once or twice daily for desired results.

Saltwater Rinse

Salt can reduce inflammation due to its natural antiseptic properties. Get half a teaspoon of salt and one glass of warm water. Now add the salt to the warm water and mix it thoroughly. Use the mixture to rinse your mouth, and ensure you do this two times daily.

Vitamins

The vitamins required for treating tooth sensitivity are vitamin B and vitamin E. If you are not getting enough, then you might need to take supplements. The two vitamins help to combat inflammation of the affected area to promote healthy gums and teeth. Consuming foods like fish, almonds, spinach, kale, turnip, meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy would supply these vitamins.

Yogurt

Yogurt

 

Yogurt prevents demineralization of the enamel. So get a half bowl of plain yogurt, and eat it all up. Ensure you do this at least once daily.

Garlic

Garlic has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory capabilities that treat toothache and fight oral pathogens. Now get a garlic clove, a milliliter of water, and a pinch of salt. Now crush the garlic clove and add a few drops of water and a salt pinch to it. Rub the mixture on the tooth and leave it to ac for about 15 minutes before washing it off. Doing this once a day is enough.

Guava Leaves

The leaves of guava contain flavonoids such as quercetin and rutin, which both have anti-inflammatory properties and relieve sensitive tooth pain. Take a few guava leaves and wash them properly. Chew them for about 2 minutes and spit them out. Try doing this once or twice daily.

Clove Oil

Clove Oil

 

Get six drops of clove oil and add it to one teaspoon of coconut oil. Stir the mixture and apply it on the affected area. Leave it for about 10 minutes then wash it off with water. Do this once or twice daily. The analgesic effect of clove oil numbs the affected tooth and the surrounding gums. This relieves the pain instantly, coupled with the present natural microbicides that kill oral pathogens.

Tea Tree Oil

The anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects of tea tree oil make it one ideal for enhancing oral health. Get six drops of tea tree oil and add it to one teaspoon of coconut oil.

Stir the mixture well and apply it to the affected area. Leave it for about 10 minutes then wash it off with water. Do this once or twice daily, and make sure you don’t swallow the oil mixture.

Fluoride Mouthwash

Fluoride helps to strengthen the enamel of the teeth and helps to reduce a toothache to a great extent. All you need is a cup of fluoride mouthwash. Take a sip and rinse your mouth with it. Make sure you rinse it very well for like 2 minutes before you spit it out. Do this twice a day for good results.

Fluoride Toothpaste

Using a fluoride toothpaste is recommended for proper maintenance of the teeth. A healthy tooth means there would be no pain associated with sensitive teeth. Fluoride helps to strengthen the enamel of the teeth and helps to reduce a toothache to a great extent.

Apart from following the remedies mentioned above, there are a lot of reasons to take personal precautions regarding dealing with the teeth. Handling the tooth well prevents an outbreak of tooth sensitivity in the future. Some basic lifestyle changes can enhance the health of the teeth and prevent the occurrence of sensitive tooth pain.

Tips to Prevent Sensitivity in Teeth


Tips to Prevent Sensitivity in Teeth

Follow these instructions to avoid tooth sensitivity;

  • Using a soft bristled brush would prevent the teeth from experiencing wear from abrasion. A hard bristled brush can have an abrasive effect on the teeth and gums, which can lead to irritation or wear of enamel.
  • The way you brush your teeth matters a lot. Brushing your teeth with a lot of force would cause the gums to get inflamed and also cause the enamel to wear off. Ensure to brush gently, swaying from side to side and top to bottom at regular intervals.
  • One of the fastest ways to cause your teeth to wear is by grinding them often. Grinding your teeth on each other causes them to wear or even break. To be on a safer side, avoid grinding your teeth completely.
  • It is clear that acidic foods have a part to play in causing wear of the teeth. This now leads to the pain associated with sensitive teeth. Try out new delicacies that are low in acid content.
  • Nothing beats good oral hygiene. If you do not brush your teeth twice daily, use mouthwash, and floss your teeth, then you are in for a lot of dental issues.
  • A regular visit to the dentist would not bite at all. A dentist would help you keep track of your oral health, and help render treatments when something goes wrong. You should give your dentist a call today. Visit your dentist as soon as you suspect you may have a problem such as a cavity, a cracked tooth or a change in your gums. Treatment can stop things getting worse.
  • Avoid sugary, fizzy and acidic foods and drinks.
  • Don’t brush your teeth from side to side – instead, use small, circular motions.

There are also foods that are not advised to be consumed when experiencing pain from sensitive teeth. They include

  • Sodas
  • Ice cream
  • Hot tea
  • Candy
  • Toffee
  • Hot coffee
  • Citrus fruits
  • Ice
  • Tomatoes
  • Cold drinks

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