Most people have four wisdom teeth, located at the very back of their mouth behind their molars. It’s also fairly common to be born with less than four wisdom teeth! Wisdom teeth will sit under the gum line until the age of 17 to 25, at which time they should begin to erupt and become visible.
Wisdom teeth were essential for our ancestors - who had larger jaws than today’s humans - with plenty of room for wisdom teeth to fit. Our ancestors had a largely plant based diet so an extra set of molars came in handy to chew tough plants.
Wisdom teeth seldom cause problems when they have fully erupted, are in the correct position and biting correctly with the opposing teeth, and when you are able to keep them clean and healthy.
Painful wisdom teeth - Are my wisdom teeth coming in? Do my wisdom teeth need to be removed?
Your wisdom teeth will generally make an appearance from the age of 17, although sometimes wisdom teeth never come through the gum. You may experience swelling and tenderness in the gums behind your back molars, jaw pain and it may be difficult to open your mouth wide.
Once you feel or see a wisdom tooth appearing, you will need to brush as floss the area just like any other tooth to keep it healthy.
Sometimes wisdom teeth do not grow in a direct downwards/upwards direction. They can grow in any direction, even towards other teeth or your gums. When this happens, your wisdom teeth may become impacted with your other teeth, causing significant dental issues with other healthy teeth. Our dentists can advise you if this is the case and can formulate a treatment plan to prevent further damage.
WHow much does it cost to have my wisdom teeth removed?
Wisdom teeth can usually be removed by your dentist with a local anaesthetic. Your dentist will need to take x-rays to determine the shape, direction and status of your teeth. They will then numb the area and begin the process of removing the tooth/teeth. Rest assured, our dentists will ensure you will feel comfortable during the procedure and you can take breaks if you need to.
If you are particularly nervous about wisdom tooth extraction or you have a complicated case, wisdom teeth may also be removed under a general anaesthetic. Your dentist will be able to talk to you about this option, and whether it’s right for you.
There are a number of factors that influence the cost to remove a wisdom tooth or teeth. Your level of Private Health Insurance will also impact the cost of this procedure. Sometimes wisdom teeth don’t need to be extracted at all, and other treatment options may be available. The best way to find out if you need your wisdom teeth taken out, is to visit your dentist who can complete a thorough assessment of your mouth and recommend a treatment plan. At our Geelong CBD dental clinic, we offer all patients a FREE wisdom teeth consultation. On completion of this consultation, your dentist will be able to provide you with a treatment plan and quote. You can then use this quote to check your entitlement with your private health insurer.
As a general guide, generally each extraction can cost between $230 and $340 before private health insurance rebates.
Recovery after wisdom teeth removal
After your wisdom teeth removal, you may need to take some time off work to rest and recover. Your dentist can provide you with a medical certificate for your workplace if this is required. You may feel stiffness or tightness in the jaw, and you may also experience bruising and swelling. Your dentist will recommend pain relief medication for you, which is usually available over-the-counter.
If at any time you are concerned about your recovery, feel free to call the clinic on (03) 5292 2067 or get in touch via our 24/7 dental emergency SMS hotline on 0488 811 456.