Wisdom teeth are the last to develop, growing in the back of the jaw after all other teeth erupt. Most people do not have enough room in the back of the mouth to accommodate the wisdom teeth (third molars). The wisdom teeth often become trapped in the jawbone or erupt at an angle.
If wisdom teeth are not removed, they often create problems. If your wisdom teeth are impacted (trapped in the jawbone or only partially erupted), they can cause pain and swelling. Serious problems such as infection, cysts, cavities, and even tumors are often the result.
Removing the wisdom teeth before they become a problem is the best way to protect you or your child from complications down the road. Wisdom tooth removal is performed in our office by one of our oral surgeons, often at the recommendation of your family’s regular dentist.
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Preparing for Your Child’s Wisdom Teeth Removal
If your dentist has recommended wisdom tooth removal for your teenager, it is essential to prepare in advance so that they are comfortable during the healing process. After surgery, your teen should rest for a few days and allow their mouth to heal. They are limited to a liquid diet on the first day following surgery. Depending on their comfort level, they can move on to a soft diet on day two or three, slowly adding other foods for the first two weeks.
Grocery List for Wisdom Teeth Removal
Your teen will be hungry but tired after wisdom tooth removal. They must get plenty of rest and fluids. To make sure they have options during recovery, stock your home with healthy, non-carbonated beverages and soft foods, such as:
- Protein shakes
- Meal supplements such as Boost or Ensure
- Refried beans
- Mashed potatoes
- Scrambled eggs
- Creamy peanut butter
- Baby food
- Mashed bananas
After the first few days, your teen should begin advancing their diet as tolerated. By the end of the second week, your child should be eating most foods, although they may still avoid crunchy and hard foods until they are comfortable eating them.
Make sure your child understands what to expect and properly prepares before their wisdom teeth surgery. They should plan on taking a few days off from school to recuperate at home following surgery.
The night before surgery, they cannot eat or drink anything after midnight. Dressing in loose, comfortable clothing is helpful during post-op recovery. Remind them not to wear any makeup or jewelry to their appointment.
If your teenager’s consultation is on the same day as surgery bring your teen to our office 20 minutes before their appointment so they can relax and you can fill out any needed paperwork. You must stay in the office during the entire procedure for any child under age 18.
Your teen will be uncomfortable for the first two or three days after wisdom teeth removal. Over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen can be sufficient to control pain. We usually prescribe more potent pain relievers as well as antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection. Ice packs applied throughout the day help minimize swelling.
Let your child lounge on the sofa, watch television, read, or play video games following surgery. Naps are encouraged, as is drinking a lot of water to stay hydrated. They should avoid any stress or physical excursion the day of and the day after surgery.
Choosing a Surgeon for Wisdom Teeth Extraction
Although a general dentist can remove wisdom teeth, most refer these patients to oral surgeons for a very good reason – experience. General dentistry focuses on routine care, oral health, and procedures such as fillings. Oral surgeons perform wisdom teeth extractions regularly, becoming proficient in performing the task safely and efficiently for optimal results. Oral surgeons are also trained in and experienced in using IV sedation, often used during this procedure.
Capital Oral Surgery understands you are placing you or your child’s care in our hands for wisdom teeth removal. We do all we can to put our patients at ease and ensure their surgery goes smoothly. As oral surgeons, we are trained extensively in complex surgical procedures, including complicated extractions. Drs. Barber and Lucaci will thoroughly explain the process, answer any questions, and provide pre-op and post-op instructions to ensure quick recovery with minimal trauma.
If you or your child needs wisdom teeth extraction, you can schedule a consultation with our doctors using our online form or by calling Topeka Office Phone Number (785) 588-4244. We are confident you will appreciate our compassionate care and surgical expertise.