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Tooth Removal & Ridge Preservation

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Wisdom teeth are the most common extractions in dentistry. Although extractions of other teeth may need a similar process, wisdom teeth often have a number of other issues that need to be addressed. Some wisdom teeth come in misaligned or crooked and can cause pain. In most cases, wisdom teeth need to be removed.

When a wisdom tooth only emerges partially, a flap of skin, called an operculum, may form over the tooth. This flap can collect food particles and is very hard to clean. This makes it easy for an infection, called pericoronitis, to develop. This usually goes away on its own but can still be the source of some comfort issues.

The surgery consists of a cut around the gum tissue to help reveal the tooth. The tooth is slowly worked out of the gums. In few cases when the tooth cannot be removed by pulling, it is broken into pieces and lifted out. Depending on the size of the cuts, sutures may be needed to close the area.

Immediately after the surgery, you will want to rest. Take a long nap. Make sure you have a family member drive you home. The anesthesia will still be in effect and you cannot drive in that condition. Expect the site to bleed for a little, not too much, and not for too long. We will apply gauze after the surgery and you will need to change them out when they get soaked. If bleeding continues past 24 hours please give us a call. When you do rest, do not lie flat, this may prolong bleeding. Prop your head up on a pillow when you lie down. Make sure you take all prescriptions as directed as well as using an ice pack for any pain.

You will be limited to soft foods for a few days after your surgery. Some recommended foods are:

  • Gelatin
  • Pudding
  • Yogurt
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Ice Cream
  • Thin Soups

Do not use straws or anything that requires a sucking motion. This will loosen your clots. Also, please do not smoke during your recovery.