Over one hundred years ago there was no such thing as “pain management” during dental treatment. In fact, you might even have been sitting in a barber’s chair in order to get a tooth removed. This doesn’t mean that you should immediately feel overjoyed at the idea of wisdom teeth extraction today, but it does say that you can take one thing as a certainty – your wisdom teeth pain can be almost entirely managed and eliminated.
Understanding the Pain of Wisdom Tooth Extraction
Let’s make sure that this discussion about pain management during wisdom tooth removal begins with total honesty. That means we have to admit a few very basic facts:
- Wisdom teeth have roots and “want” to remain in your jaw. This means that they can be tough to get out and that means that discomfort and pain are an immediate possibility.
- Not all wisdom teeth are cooperative enough to erupt fully from the jaw and gum. This means that there may be some minor surgical steps required to get access to the wisdom tooth and ensure that all of it has been removed.
- Wisdom teeth removal is traumatic to the mouth and leads to discomfort and swelling in the days following the procedure.
- Many people are very scared about the idea of extraction, let alone the simultaneous removal of four adult teeth.
So, with all of this in mind it might seem as if there is no possible way to address the issue of wisdom teeth extraction and managing the pain. Fortunately, that is not the case and you can face even the most complex wisdom tooth extraction with the full knowledge that you can be soothed and kept free of pain and discomfort to the fullest degree possible.
From the Beginning
Let’s look at the ways that pain is managed, starting with the pre-treatment steps. If you are about to have wisdom tooth extraction it is likely that your dentist has told you that you need someone to drive you to and from the procedure. This is not because you are going to be so blinded by pain and fear that you will be unable to do this, but because you are going to be lightly sedated and unable to drive safely.
Most patients now begin their own pain management by taking prescription medications just before they leave home for the dental appointment. They will be feeling very calm as they arrive at the office and will then receive even more pain relief as they are prepared for the procedure.
For example, many people have swabs of numbing agent placed in their mouths while they are being prepared. This eliminates even the famous “pinch” that the anesthetic syringe causes. So, you are numb before you are even given a numbing agent!
You will then receive one of several options for pain management during your wisdom tooth treatment. You may be given an injection or gas that puts you into a “twilight” condition that leaves you unaware of your surroundings and totally free of pain. You will be woken from this state only after the extractions are done.
Even if you have soreness or pain after the extraction, your dentist will give you an appropriate pain reliever that ensures you heal with great comfort and without any sense of lingering pain.