Wisdom teeth

Wisdom teeth

Wisdom teeth are the very back molar teeth, which are generally the last teeth to enter the gums, usually during the late teens or twenties. Some people may experience this even later.

Why do they cause problems?

Often there is little space for these teeth, and they can become wedged in (known as ‘impacted’). Some remain buried and cause no problem, but others may lead to recurrent infections in the gums, decay, damage to adjacent teeth, or may cause ulcers in the gums or cause cysts to form in the jawbone. Current guidelines suggest that wisdom teeth should be removed in these cases.

How long will the procedure take?

The removal of wisdom teeth normally takes 20 minutes but may take up to 45 minutes.

What kind of anaesthetic do I have?

The procedure can be done with either local or general anaesthetic. In the Dental Surgery, a local anaesthetic is normally used, with or without some form of sedation. A local anaesthetic involves an injection to numb part of the jaw and lip. You are awake throughout the procedure but should not feel any pain. The numbing effects will last for about 2-3 hours. Mr Greig has been taking out wisdom teeth for patients in the hospital and dental practice for over 10 years. He has extensive experience in this field and is able to offer patients the convenience of treatment in familiar surroundings thus avoiding an unnecessary and daunting visit to the hospital. Many patients choose to be unaware of the procedure and with this, in mind, Mr Greig offers intravenous sedation in the practice.

Further reading
NICE guidance to the NHS on the removal of wisdom teeth

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