Wisdom Teeth Swelling

By the time you turn 18, you are probably going to have 32 teeth already. For some, it takes longer, but an average adult will have them by 20 years. You have 16 teeth on the top and 16 on the bottom. The ones in the front – canine, incisors and bicuspid teeth – help you grasp and bite food. The ones in the back are perfect for grinding food up into a suitable consistency. Then you have the third and last molars on the lower and upper jars – they are called wisdom teeth. Wisdom teeth are the last to erupt, and the process can be quite painful and lead to wisdom teeth swelling. Why does this happen? What can you do about it? Keep reading to discover now!

Wisdom Teeth Swelling After Extraction

After wisdom tooth extraction, swellings around gum, mouth, cheeks and even one side of the face are normally experienced. At first, the swelling is mild; after 2-3 days, it will reach its maximum. The jaw stiffness and swelling can last up to 14 days. You can get relief with the following methods.

  • Apply ice pack on side of the face for 30 mins on and 30 mins off to soothe swelling and pain on the day of extraction.
  • Drink adequate fluids and make eat soft foods such as soup, pasta, tofu, etc.
  • Rinse gently with salt water or other solution recommended by your doctor to clean your mouth and keep good hygiene.
  • Brush your teeth from the second day of extraction and brush gently and avoid blood clots.
  • Anti-inflammatory OTC painkiller can help reduce pain and swelling, and make eating, speaking easier.
  • Avoid sucking, like drinking through a straw, for it can loosen your blood clots and hinder your healing process.
  • Do not smoking which may irritate your teeth and prolong your healing.

Know more about how to survive wisdom tooth swelling after extraction from the video below:

Wisdom Teeth Swelling Without Extraction

Your wisdom teeth are at the end of the jaw, so they are more susceptible to infections. It is, therefore, important to maintain proper oral hygiene to prevent an infection. Here are some of the most common reasons why you are dealing with wisdom teeth swelling.

1. Gingivitis

This common periodontal disease causes redness, irritation and swelling of your gums.

  • Causes: Poor oral hygiene is the number one cause of gingivitis because it leads to the accumulation of plaque, which is a sticky layer, composed of bacteria. Starches and sugar in your food interact with bacteria in your mouth, which results in plaque buildup.
  • Symptoms: Healthy gums are usually pale pink in color. If you notice your gums are becoming dusky red and bleed easily, you may have developed gingivitis. The condition is not painful. Other symptoms may include bad breath, swelling, tenderness and softness on the gums.
  • Treatment: Maintaining proper oral hygiene is the most important thing to do. Your dentist will evaluate the situation and remove all tartar and plaque first. You should also come for checkups on a regular basis and may even require regular cleaning.

2. Pericoronitis

It causes inflammation of the gum tissue around the crown part of your tooth. It usually affects your wisdom tooth, and often leads to wisdom teeth swelling.

  • Causes: Pericoronitis occurs when bacteria build up around the wisdom tooth, especially when the tooth partially erupts, making it prone to trapping foods debris and getting infected.
  • Symptoms: You may experience mild to severe symptoms, including swelling and redness of the gums, pain, tenderness, bad taste from pus, bad breath, fever, swollen nodes, difficulty swallowing, feeling unwell and loss of appetite.
  • Treatment: There are different treatment options available depending on the severity of pericoronitis. Your dentist will help manage pain first and give you antibiotics to clear infection. Minor surgery may well be required to remove the overlapping gum tissue. Sometimes, they may remove your wisdom tooth to resolve the issue.

3. Impacted Tooth

You have an impacted tooth when it does not break through the gum.

  • Causes: Wisdom tooth is easy to be impacted because they are the last tooth to erupt and there may be not enough space for it to come out completely and normally or the jaw is too small.
  • Symptoms: The most common symptoms include pain or tenderness of the gums, difficulty opening the mouth, jaw ache, headache, wisdom teeth swelling and unpleasant taste. You may occasionally notice swollen lymph nodes in the neck.
  • Treatment: You may not require any treatment when your impacted tooth is not causing any pain. OTC pain relievers may help if you experience any pain. If the pain is unbearable, the only option left is to extract the tooth.

4. Tooth Decay

It refers to a condition when plaque buildup starts destroying the tooth.

  • Causes: Bacteria in your mouth feed on food and leave a substance called plaque on your teeth and gums. These bacteria also release acids that attack your teeth for 20 minutes after you eat. Overtime, this results in tooth decay.
  • Symptoms: The most common symptoms are swelling around the gums, a hole on your teeth and bad breath. You may also notice white, gray, black or brown spots on your teeth.
  • Treatment: The severity of the problem determines the most suitable treatment option. When caught early, you can resolve the issue simply by getting fluoride treatments. You may need a filling if the decay has formed a cavity. A crown is another option used when the damage to your tooth is severe. A root canal to get rid of the diseased pulp of tooth is another common option. Sometimes, it is not possible to save the tooth and removal is the only choice.

5. Other Causes for Wisdom Teeth Swelling

In addition to the causes mentioned above, you may end up dealing with wisdom teeth swelling due to many other issues, including:

  • Infection caused by injury, poor hygiene, etc.
  • Cysts or small pockets of fluid develop around the teeth
  • Pressure caused during the eruption of wisdom teeth

What to Do If Wisdom Teeth is Causing Swelling

If you have already developed wisdom teeth swelling, you may want to try the following to make things manageable.

1. Brush Your Teeth Properly

Brush properly to prevent a buildup of plaque on your teeth. Use a toothbrush that has bristles made of nylon and gently brush fronts and backs of teeth. Move your brush in circular, swirling motions. Avoid sideways movement.

2. Rinse Your Mouth

Rinsing your mouth with saltwater solution will help prevent infections. The salt has antibacterial properties. It clears infections and soothes inflamed gums. The saline water is also beneficial for a sore throat. You can also use a mixture of water and lemon juice for swishing.

3. Try Hot and Cold Compress

Using warm and cold compresses may help reduce swelling. Warm compresses work by relieving pain, whereas cold compresses reduce swelling. You can soak a facecloth in warm water, wring it, and place it against your face. For a cold compress, simply wrap a few ice cubes in a clean cloth and hold it against your face.

4. Use Clove Oil

It has anti-inflammatory properties, which is why it helps a lot in reducing inflammation. It also works to reduce pain. Simply, soak some cotton in clove oil and place it near the affected tooth for an hour.

5. Other Methods

  • You can wrap camphor in cotton and place it close to your affected tooth to reduce pain.
  • You can find OTC numbing gels that reduce pain sensation. The relief is only temporary though.
 
 
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