Wisdom tooth – what is it?
Wisdom teeth are – as their name suggests – nothing but teeth. The large teeth that come up at the back of the mouth are called wisdom teeth. Occasionally those are also referred to as third molars. These teeth have a speciality. These are the last teeth that erupt. Usually people get this tooth or teeth between the age group of 17 and 25 although that may vary from person to person.
Just like the rest of the teeth in your mouth a wisdom tooth may also undergo decay and get a cavity. On the other hand it may get impacted or get stuck below (or even inside) the gum line. In case you develop an infection with your wisdom tooth you have to get treated by a dentist. It is important to note that all pain related to your wisdom tooth or teeth are not because of infection. In the following section of the blog post let us explore treatment procedures for your wisdom tooth infection and its resultant pain.
Wisdom tooth and its infection
How does a wisdom tooth get infected? A dentist having years of experience in wisdom teeth removal in London says wisdom teeth are usually harder to clean. This is why they are prone to infections. Food debris and harmful bacteria easily get stuck between your wisdom tooth and the gum tissues. Even during everyday brushing and flossing you may miss out the space between the wisdom tooth and the back of the mouth. Even this contributes to tartar build-up, which leads to infection.
On the other hand an impacted wisdom tooth may not grow through the gum tissues normally. It may emerge partially and to make the situation worse may erupt at an angle. An impacted wisdom tooth is also known to develop totally sideways. According to dentists a partially impacted wisdom tooth is always prone to infection. This is because given its shape and angle, the tooth has higher chances of undergoing decay. A tooth gets infected when harmful bacteria in the mouth make a hole in the outermost enamel layer of it. An infected tooth thus develops cavity.
Different kinds of harmful bacteria present in the mouth can get your wisdom tooth infected. In exceptional cases this infection spreads to the other areas of the mouth as well as the head. The types of bacteria those are responsible for infecting your wisdom tooth infection include – Streptococcus, Actinomyces, Peptostreptococcus, Prevotella Fusobacterium, Aggregatibacter, Eikenella Corrodens and others.
Treatments for your wisdom tooth
A number of treatments are there to cure a wisdom tooth infection. These include –
- Medications to cure the infection
- Dental work to repair the problem
- Invasive dental surgery to remove the problem tooth
A dentist chooses the treatment option depending on the condition of a patient. Thus the treatment option for the problem varies from case to case. Usually a dentist first examines a patient’s mouth and takes an x-ray of the affected area. Based on this the expert determines the best treatment option in a given case.
Medications for an infected wisdom tooth
Dentists rely on antibiotics to clear up the infection of a wisdom tooth. you have to take these medicines for about a week before getting the problem tooth repaired or removed. Antibiotic medicines contribute a lot in healing the infection of a wisdom tooth and preventing the infection to spread further. Antibiotic medicines that are prescribed in these cases include Penicillin, Amoxicillin, Metronidazole, Clindamycin, Erythromycin and others.
An infected wisdom tooth may cause severe pain. Thus analgesic or pain-killing medications are also usually prescribed to these patients. Pain-killers that are normally prescribed by dentists at the Bayswater Dental Clinic in London include Ibuprofen, Lornoxicam, Acetaminophen and Aspirin, etc.
Repairing of wisdom tooth
Once the infection gets cured you have to visit your dentist again in order to have the tooth removed or repaired. Fixing a cavity in a wisdom tooth is just similar to that of the other teeth in the mouth. At the end you may also require a crown or filling to reinforce the tooth. In certain cases a dentist is also known to file down the top sides of a wisdom tooth. As a result the rough and bumpy edges that trap bacteria and food particles get removed. Filing makes the tooth somewhat smaller but that is good if the case involves crowding.
Removal of wisdom tooth
In cases where a wisdom tooth is damaged dentists usually choose to remove it. Wisdom tooth removal is done through invasive dental surgery. In fact invasive surgery is the best way to sort out the problem of impacted wisdom tooth infection. Impacted wisdom teeth are better to remove or extract because that prevents chances of future infections. A dentist also has to remove the gum tissue from the top of an impacted wisdom tooth in the process of helping it to erupt. In another dental procedure only the top part of a wisdom tooth is removed. Technically the procedure is coronectomy. It proves helpful protecting the roots of the tooth along with the supporting nerves and the surrounding jawbone.
Wisdom tooth removal surgery
Pulling a wisdom tooth may lead to unwanted complications. Local anaesthesia is must, although in many cases general anaesthesia may also be required. The procedure easily lasts about 20 minutes or longer. In difficult cases dentists extract a wisdom tooth in pieces. This is done to avoid any injury to the surrounding nerves and the jawbone.
Wisdom tooth extraction is likely to have side effects which include – bleeding, infection, numbness in your tongue, lower lip, or chin and weakness in the jawbone.
Even after extraction of a wisdom tooth an infection may develop in the mouth. This may occur anytime between two weeks and two months following the surgical extraction. Therefore it is important to be aware about any developments in the mouth during that period. If you come cross anything or any symptom report the matter immediately to your dentist.
Home remedies and wisdom tooth
If the truth is to be said wisdom tooth infection cannot be cured by home remedies. However attempts with salt water rinse, cold compress, swishing the mouth with hydrogen peroxide, over the counter analgesic medicines can provide you with temporary relief from the problem.
The Bayswater Dental Clinic quotes a nominal cost for wisdom teeth removal in the UK. Do not hesitate to call us and schedule an appointment in case you have pain and discomfort in and around the wisdom tooth area. Usually this area is difficult to observe. You cannot prevent a wisdom tooth infection. But timely intervention of a dentist can help you from experiencing the worse.