How are wisdom teeth removed

Removing wisdom teeth - cause, procedure and risks

Sooner or later, many patients are advised to have their wisdom teeth removed. But why should these be removed at all and what is their actual task in our teeth? Many patients wonder whether removal causes severe pain and what they need to consider after removal. In this article we would therefore like to answer the most important questions for you.

What are wisdom teeth?

The wisdom teeth come from a time when we speak of our ancestors as hunters and gatherers. These had to chew their food unprocessed, which is why they were dependent on the wisdom teeth as additional molars. Nowadays, however, the food is much softer, which is why we actually no longer need it. Nowadays these usually erupt at the age of 16-24 as the last teeth and are classified as the rearmost molars in the rows of teeth. Wisdom teeth are already in place in the dentition before birth, but not all four wisdom teeth have to erupt in every human being.

Why can wisdom teeth cause pain?

In the course of evolution, human teeth have changed and receded due to cooked and softer food. Thus, there is simply no more space left in many dentures for the wisdom teeth so that they can break through unhindered and without problems. The wisdom teeth then press against the bone, the adjacent molar, or the skin. Many people then feel uncomfortable pain and inflammation and other problems arise.

When do wisdom teeth need to be extracted?

There can be various reasons why it can be useful to have the wisdom teeth removed. The most common reasons are the lack of space, tooth decay or the risk of inflammation.

Lack of space

Wisdom teeth often have little space. So it can be that they press against the already existing molar tooth and damage it. To prevent this, removing the last molar can be very useful.

Risk of ignition

As long as the wisdom teeth erupt, they can be covered by a thin mucous membrane. Since these are easily inflamed, severe pain and swelling can occur, which is why the wisdom teeth should be removed.


Wisdom teeth are usually difficult to brush, even if they have come through fully. Since they represent the rearmost molars, they are usually difficult to clean with a toothbrush. Wisdom teeth are therefore often more often affected by tooth decay than other teeth.

How are wisdom teeth removed?

There are several ways to pull wisdom teeth. This depends on whether the teeth are still in the patient's jaw or have already grown out. In addition, these can be removed on an outpatient basis or through a longer operation. When removing the wisdom teeth, it should also be decided whether all four wisdom teeth should be removed or only two teeth at a time. We have listed the different procedures for you below:

Wisdom teeth that have already erupted

If the wisdom teeth have already fully erupted, they can usually be removed quickly and easily on an outpatient basis. First, a local anesthetic is applied and as soon as it starts, the tooth is extracted.

Wisdom teeth located in the jaw

If the wisdom teeth are still in the jaw, the procedure is a little more complex. Mucous membranes and bones must be ablated to remove the wisdom teeth. The wisdom teeth are removed under local anesthesia. With this type of procedure, slight pain or swelling is to be expected.

Removal of wisdom teeth under general anesthesia

If the procedure is unusually time-consuming or if the patient is terrified of the procedure, the wisdom teeth are removed under general anesthesia.

How can I prepare for wisdom teeth removal?

There are a few things you can do to prepare yourself for the time after your wisdom teeth have been removed.

  1. Plan your eating so that it doesn't adversely affect healing. Food that you don't have to chew heavily is particularly suitable for this.
  2. Get cold packs that you can use to cool your puffy cheeks.
  3. Get painkillers and appropriate mouthwashes to be well taken care of after the procedure.
  4. Arrange for someone to pick you up after the operation or think of ordering a taxi as an alternative.
  5. Use a suitable toothbrush to prevent inflammation and irritation. Small toothbrushes are particularly suitable for this.

Is wisdom tooth removal painful?

After the wisdom teeth are removed, the cheeks and mouth area are swollen in most patients. This swelling can persist for several days. However, the pain can subside immediately a few hours after the procedure. However, if the pain returns after a few days, gets worse, or the swelling spreads, this suggests a wound infection. In such cases, antiseptic mouthwashes and gels can help prevent them.

What can you do about pain after the procedure?

Many people turn to pain relievers after removing their wisdom teeth. Pain relievers are often given before the procedure. In addition to ibuprofen, acetaminophen can be used for pain relief. Please do not use ASA as it increases the risk of bleeding.

Which foods and drinks should I avoid?

After the procedure, you should eat soft food for a few days and avoid hard or crumbly foods. You should also avoid hot drinks, coffee or alcohol and dairy products.

Can I do sports after removing my wisdom teeth?

Sports or other physically demanding activities should be avoided for about two weeks after the wisdom teeth have been extracted.

What are the risks during wisdom tooth removal?

Wisdom tooth removal carries certain risks, just like other surgical procedures. However, we can keep these to a very low level through comprehensive diagnostics. In addition, certain risks always depend on the size of the procedure. Postoperative inflammation can arise when bacteria penetrate the wound, through inflammatory processes in the maxillary sinus, and through the development of abscesses or bone infections. Temporary nerve damage occurs very rarely, and this manifests itself in the form of tingling, numbness or sensory disturbances in the lower lip.

When will the threads be pulled or will there be a follow-up inspection?

In most cases, the stitches are pulled around 7 days after the wisdom teeth are removed. When the sutures are pulled always depends on the location of the wound as well as its size and the use of drains, which is why in some patients the sutures are removed sooner or later.

Will the health insurance company cover the costs?

The statutory health insurance companies bear the costs of removing the wisdom teeth if this is medically necessary. If general anesthesia is not necessary, the patient has to pay for it himself if he so wishes. In the case of private health insurance companies, the respective tariff provisions selected apply.

Do you have any questions regarding the removal of your wisdom teeth or would you like to arrange a consultation? Just contact us and give us a call. We look forward to welcoming you to our dental practice.