Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars to erupt at the end of your jaw. Not everyone gets wisdom teeth in their lifetime, but they can cause dental problems if they do not emerge fully or at the correct angle.
Wisdom teeth can erupt abnormally due to a lack of space in the jaw. When your wisdom teeth emerge at an angle or fail to fully erupt, they become impacted and can affect your surrounding teeth leading to decay, infection, and discomfort.
Wisdom tooth pain is common, and people typically require surgery to remove impacted wisdom teeth. To manage any discomfort while waiting for surgery, you can try a wisdom tooth pain remedy at home to minimise inflammation and swelling.
Causes of Wisdom Tooth Pain
The most common reason to experience wisdom tooth discomfort is because of inflammation of the gums. Wisdom teeth are often partially trapped below the gum line, resulting in irritation and inflammation. Using over the counter pain medication can help reduce inflammation while waiting to have the tooth removed.
The awkward positioning of wisdom teeth and how challenging they are to clean can often lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and infection, resulting in severe discomfort.
Wisdom Tooth Pain Prevention
Wisdom teeth typically erupt between the ages of 17 and 25 years old. Your dentist monitors wisdom teeth development to ensure no major complications arise.
If a wisdom tooth erupts or impacts the adjacent teeth, your dentist may recommend preventative treatment to minimise any damage. A simple extraction is used to remove wisdom teeth that have emerged fully above the gum line and do not require any surgical tooth exposure. This type of wisdom tooth removal is performed in a dentist’s chair under local anaesthetic.
If your teeth are fully or partially impacted below the gum line, you will need a complex extraction. This procedure can be performed under general anaesthesia and requires the dentist to make an incision in the gum and expose the tooth. The tooth may also need to be sectioned for easier removal.
At Toothsome, we offer twilight sedation and general anaesthetic for our patients. Twilight sedation induces a deep sense of relaxation, allowing you to respond to commands from your dentist, while not experiencing any discomfort and stress around the procedure. General anaesthesia is given in a hospital and you are completely asleep and unaware of the procedure.
Preventative wisdom tooth treatment at Toothsome ensures your remaining teeth are healthy, prevents misalignment and allows for better oral hygiene.
Symptoms of Wisdom Tooth Pain and Wisdom Tooth Pain Remedy
While impacted wisdom teeth do not always exhibit symptoms, when a wisdom tooth becomes infected, it can damage surrounding teeth and gums. There are several signs to look out for, and many home remedies you can use to alleviate the symptoms of wisdom tooth pain.
Your cheek and the gums around your wisdom teeth swell due to inflammation caused by the impacted tooth, or infection. To reduce swelling, you can apply an ice pack to the side of your face intermittently for 5 minutes. Cold therapy temporarily numbs the site to reduce any discomfort.
Impacted wisdom teeth can inflame the mandibular joints and cause stiffness and discomfort in the jaw. This often prevents you from opening and closing your mouth easily. You can relieve jaw discomfort with over-the-counter medications such as anti-inflammatories.
Foul Breath and Bad Taste in Your Mouth
An unpleasant odour or taste in your mouth indicates an infected tooth. Infection is often due to trapped food particles caught between the wisdom tooth and the second molar. However, you may also have developed pericoronitis, which occurs when debris gets caught under a flap of gum tissue.
Rinsing your mouth with a salt water solution can help dislodge food particles and remove bacteria around the painful tooth. Salt water acts as a disinfectant to provide temporary relief. Combine 1 tablespoon of salt in 1 cup of warm water, and swish around your mouth for at least 30 seconds. Repeat 4-5 times per day, and after eating.
Dull Throbbing Ache
An impacted wisdom tooth can put pressure on the adjacent molars, or interfere with nerves in the tooth root, causing aches or a sharp stabbing sensation.
Your gums may become tender and bleed around the impacted wisdom tooth. Gum irritation can lead to gingivitis and other secondary infections. You can minimise bleeding gums by brushing and flossing carefully.
Get High-Quality Dental Care at Toothsome
Wisdom tooth pain should be taken seriously. While remedies for temporary relief are available, one way to achieve total relief from wisdom tooth discomfort is to see our wisdom tooth expert Dr David Willis at Toothsome to assess your wisdom teeth and discuss whether they need removal.
Wisdom tooth extraction is a common and routine dental procedure. Contact the team at Toothsome via our online form or call any of our Sydney-based practice locations to book your appointment.
Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.