Wisdom teeth are the third and last molars on each side of the upper and lower jaws. Due to lack of space as a result of the incompatibility of jaw size and the number and size of teeth, they are liable to grow at a different angle from the other teeth or not come through at all and remain trapped in the jawbone.
These trapped or partially trapped teeth can cause repeated infections and even cysts and various other pathologies in that part of the mouth. Therefore it is best to remove these teeth as preventative measure. In a case of acute infection from a wisdom tooth, the infection may spread to deeper cavities in the neck and lead to hospitalization, intravenous antibiotic treatment and – in certain cases – even to having to drain the abscess under local or general anesthetic.
For light infections, oral antibiotics should suffice. After the acute infection stage has passed, the affected wisdom tooth should be removed. Removal of wisdom teeth in the Maxillofacial Surgery Clinic at Shaare Zedek Medical Center is performed by specialist doctors and can be done under either local or general anesthetic.
The recovery process from the removal wound does take time and each person is different. There are many variables, such as general health, infection processes from the uprooted teeth and the surrounding tissue, maintaining strict hygiene after the removal, etc. which all affect speed and quality of recovery. After removal, you should only eat a soft and liquid diet for 24 hours. After that, brush your teeth, and start washing your mouth with saltwater 4-6 times a day for a week. Avoid physical activity for the first 48 hours. If you have a prescription for antibiotics, start on the day of the removal and finish the entire course. Do not use any other drugs – including antibiotics – without first consulting your doctor.
If you see a rash or the skin is itchy, stop the drugs immediately and tell your doctor. If you develop a high temperature, experience pain for over 36 hours or new swelling, call the clinic. Sutures will be removed a week after the removal (unless they are self-dissolving of course.) Some treatment requires regular monitoring. Please get to your appointment on time. In order to reduce unnecessary suffering and avoid complications, please observe the instructions given to the patient by the doctor and the clinic staff.