TREATMENT FOR AN IMPACTED TOOTH
Each tooth is formed within your jaw bones. As it develops, it travels upwards or downwards towards its appropriate place in your dental arch. This is normal and except for mild discomfort when a tooth erupts, all will be well. However, if the tooth travels in the wrong direction or if its progress is blocked by another tooth or impeded by the dense bone structure of you jaw, the tooth becomes impacted.
HOW SERIOUS IS AN IMPACTED TOOTH?
It isn’t normal for a tooth to remain beneath the surface beyond the age of 21. Difficulties probably will develop. For example, decay can occur even though an impacted tooth is not visible from the outside. Saliva with all the bacteria normally present in the mouth can reach the crown of an impacted tooth. When decay does occur, there is not a way for a dentist to fill such a cavity and severe pain will result.
Another problem is called pericoronitis. This is an infection that forms around the crown of the tooth. As with any infection that is unchecked, it may spread to the surrounding tissues with the potential of general body illness.
A third problem has to do with the pressure the impacted tooth produces. By pressing against the good erupted teeth, the pressure may injure the roots or push then out of position, affecting your ability to chew food normally.
The last type of problem which can occur has to do with the possible formation of a cyst around the impacted tooth. This form of abnormality can result in the destruction of bone tissue as well as damage to other teeth.
MUST THE TOOTH COME OUT IF IT HASN’T CAUSED TROUBLE YET?
The main problem is that no one can tell when an impacted tooth will cause you trouble. About the only thing that can be said is that trouble probably will arise and when it does it will arrive unexpectedly and at inconvenient times. If the trouble arises when you are much older, you will not stand the operation as well as you will when you have it taken
care of at an early age.
Also, if trouble arises fast, then the tooth cannot be moved until the infection or other complications have been treated. This means loss of more time and added expense along with some added risk. It’s best to have impacted teeth removed before troubles
WHAT IS THE OPERATION LIKE?
Conscious IV Sedation is a type of sedative used to create a state of semiconsciousness. It creates a ‘twilight’ state of mind in which the body is relaxed, feels no pain while with some individuals a temporary state of amnesia wipes out the memory of the procedure from your mind. This mode of sedation is the most popular with our patients undergoing surgical tooth extraction procedures and dental implant placements.
The removal of an impacted tooth is a surgical operation. It requires incisions of the gum, cutting the tooth and probably some removal of bone.
The actual removal of the tooth will be performed using an anesthesia, sterile instruments, special lighting and a dry operative field. The surgeon will be as gentle as possible in handling the soft tissue and bone. The operation may last for a period of time ranging from twenty minutes up to sixty minutes depending upon the difficulty of the procedure. The wound will be closed with sutures.
You will have some swelling and discomfort. You probably will experience some difficulty swallowing and opening your mouth. There may even be some slight discolouration of the skin. Instructions for home care will be given to you by the surgeon or their delegate.
WHAT COMPLICATIONS WILL ARISE?
None are expected. Nevertheless, any operation carries some risk. The wound caused by removal of an impacted tooth is fairly large and healing speed will depend upon the ability of your body to create tissue. If the impacted tooth is found along the lower jaw, it can rest on the main nerve that follows the jaw bone. While precautions will be taken,
sometimes the nerve can be bruised, resulting in some numbness of the lower lip on that side. This effect does not last more that a few weeks in most cases as the nerve repairs itself.
If your impacted tooth is in the upper jaw, the surgeon will take care to see that no unnecessary injury occurs to the wall of the maxillary sinus or antrum. Occasionally, the thin wall may crack slightly and some blood may seep into the sinus. If so, you may notice a trace of blood in the nose. This normally heals within a few days without complications.
Correct post-operative care will be given to you and this will help you avoid the complications which can lead to unnecessary discomfort and delay recovery.