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Most people develop wisdom teeth in the gums at the back of their mouth. They typically have four wisdom teeth, yet there are some individuals who don’t develop any wisdom teeth while others might have two or three. In some rare instances, there have been people with as many as six wisdom teeth.

These third molars rarely have sufficient room in the gums to fully emerge without complications. In some instances, the wisdom teeth can become impacted or trapped within the gums. The excessive pressure these teeth can cause poses a serious threat to the root of your existing rear molars.

To prevent many of these problems, Dr. Daniel Cannon often advocates having your wisdom teeth extracted. This is often done in late adolescence after all of the permanent molars have emerged.

If you experience pain and distress from pre-emergent wisdom teeth, he might recommend having them extracted. This is even more likely to be the case if X-rays reveal one or more impacted wisdom teeth.

Extraction often requires deep sedation, so you will need to have a friend or family member drive you home afterward. Your oral surgeon will likely prescribe pain management medication to help you feel comfortable during the recovery process.

While your gums are healing, you will need to stick to a soft-foods diet. When drinking a beverage, you should avoid using a straw as this could pull blood clots loose from the incision sites. If you do experience a little postoperative bleeding, you can lightly bite down on some rolled-up gauze. You can then clean any stray debris from your mouth with a gentle rinse of lukewarm water.

If you’re contemplating having your wisdom teeth extracted and you live in the Tulsa, Oklahoma, area, you should call 918.743.1351 to schedule a consultation at Cannon Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.