Preparing Wisdom Teeth Extraction Treatment for Kids in Maple Ridge

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Wisdom teeth, also referred to as third molars, occupy the rearmost position in the mouth. They typically emerge between ages 17 and 25. While they were once necessary for chewing coarse foods, the modern diet often leaves inadequate room for them. 

Most adults have four wisdom teeth, one in each quadrant, but some can have fewer or extra (supernumerary) wisdom teeth, and some can have none at all. Wisdom teeth extraction is a common procedure especially among adolescents, and often, this brings stress to both parents and children. 

We will examine valuable insights and tips that enhance the process, ensuring your child’s comfort and well-being as they begin their journey toward improved oral hygiene. We will also cover the complete procedure, including consultation, extraction, after-care, potential complications, and selecting the appropriate dental clinic.

Read on to learn more about the ins and outs of wisdom teeth extraction treatment for kids in Maple Ridge.

wisdom tooth extraction

Dental Extraction Consultation in Maple Ridge

  • Initial Consultation and Pre-extraction Assessment Process

Your dentist will carefully examine your child’s oral health and specific needs during the initial consultation and pre-extraction assessment for wisdom teeth removal. This is what typically happens:

  • Review Medical and Dental History
  • Comprehensive Oral Examination
  • X-rays and Imaging
  • Discuss Symptoms and Concerns
  • Treatment Options
  • Anesthesia and Sedation
  • Post-Extraction Care
  • Pre-Extraction Preparation

Before wisdom teeth extraction, several necessary preparations are essential to ensure a smooth and successful procedure. The following are the steps typically involved:

  1. Consultation: Schedule a meeting with your dentist to assess your child’s wisdom teeth and discuss medical conditions or medications that can affect the procedure.
  2. Fasting: Fasting could be required before the extraction for safe anesthesia. Refrain your child from eating, drinking, including water, as instructed.
  3. Medication Review: Share all your child’s medications with the dentist. They’ll tell you which ones to continue or pause before the extraction.
  4. Pre-Operative Care: Follow pre-operative instructions for a mouthwash or antibiotics to minimize infection risk before the extraction.

Tips to Support Your Child in Managing Dental Anxiety

  • Talk about their feelings and fears. 
  • Choose a child-friendly dentist.
  • Visit the dental office in advance.
  • Offer praise and encouragement for your child’s bravery.
  • Reward them with a small treat or a fun activity.
  • Teach your child relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or visualizations.

Wisdom Teeth Extraction Procedure

Based on a published article by Cleveland Clinic, these are the things you can expect during the wisdom teeth extraction procedure:

1. Anesthesia 

Your dentist will give your child anesthesia or sedation to ensure comfort and minimize pain during the procedure. Dr. Christine Frank, a general dentist, explains the types of dental anesthesia in an article. These common options include:

  • Local Anesthesia: An injection numbs the area around the wisdom teeth, keeping you awake during the procedure with minimal pain.
  • Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas): A mild sedative inhaled through a nose mask that relaxes you, reduces anxiety and keeps you conscious during the procedure.
  • IV Sedation: It’s given through a vein in your arm, causing deep relaxation and drowsiness, often leading to little memory of the procedure.
  • General Anesthesia: It makes you completely unconscious during the extraction, commonly used for complex cases or severe dental anxiety.

2. Tooth Exposure 

If the wisdom teeth are impacted, the dentist will need to create an incision to expose the tooth properly.

3. Tooth Removal

The dentist will gently and carefully remove the wisdom tooth from its socket in the jawbone using specialized dental instruments.

4. Stitching (If Required)

Sometimes, stitches can be needed to close the incision after the tooth extraction.

5. Gauze Placement

After the extraction, the dentist will place a piece of gauze over the extraction site to control bleeding and promote clot formation.

Recovery Instructions

The dentist will provide post-operative care instructions, including how to manage swelling and discomfort, what to eat, and how to keep the extraction site clean. Orthodontic Dental Assistant Shawn Watson explains some important steps to follow:

  • Gently bite on the gauze.
  • Avoid disturbing the area.
  • Take prescribed medications.
  • Apply ice packs.
  • Eat soft foods.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Maintain oral hygiene.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol.
  • Rest and avoid harsh activities. 

Recovery Period 

During the initial recovery phase, which typically spans a few days to a week, your child may encounter discomfort, swelling, and slight bleeding at the extraction site. Blood clots form as the body initiates the healing process in the areas from which the teeth were extracted.

Follow-up Appointment

During the follow-up appointment, your child’s dentist will examine the extraction site for complications like infection or dry socket. They’ll also remove any stitches used during the extraction and ask about your child’s recovery experience while addressing any concerns or questions.

Common Concerns and Complications 

An article published in NHS shares the common concerns and complications of wisdom teeth extraction. Listed below are the ways on how to handle them:

  1. Pain and Swelling: Use prescribed pain medications and apply ice packs to reduce swelling.
  2. Bleeding: Bite down on gauze pads and avoid vigorous rinsing. Contact your dentist if the bleeding persists.
  3. Infection: Follow post-op care instructions, take prescribed antibiotics, and maintain oral hygiene.
  4. Dry Socket: Avoid smoking, using straws, or spitting forcefully to minimize the risk. If it happens, visit your dentist immediately.
  5. Numbness or Tingling: Usually temporary, but inform your dentist if it persists.

How to Choose the Right Dentist For Wisdom Teeth Extraction

To find the right dentist for maintaining great oral health, follow these five steps:

Step 1: Seek Recommendations 

Ask your regular dentist, family, and friends for recommendations. Their experiences can help you find skilled practitioners.

Step 2: Check Credentials and Experience 

Research the recommended dentist’s credentials and experience. Check their education, training, and specialized certifications in oral surgery or teeth extraction.

Step 3: Read Reviews and Testimonials 

Read reviews and testimonials from previous patients to assess your dentist’s care quality. Positive feedback and satisfied patients indicate a trustworthy and skilled practitioner you can rely on.

Step 4: Schedule a Consultation 

Schedule a consultation with your dentist to discuss your concern. Inquire about their extraction approach, risks, anesthesia options, and recovery expectations.

Step 5: Evaluate Communication and Comfort 

Choose a dentist who communicates clearly, listens attentively, and makes you feel comfortable during the consultation. A strong connection can ease anxieties and build trust before the procedure.

wisdom tooth extraction

The Leading Dental Offers for Wisdom Teeth Extraction Services in Maple Ridge

Taking care of your child’s oral health is necessary, and entrusting it to professionals ensures optimal care. Regular dental check-ups, cleanings, specialized treatments, and wisdom teeth extraction contribute to your child’s overall well-being.

Call our dentists at Westgate Dental Centre today to schedule wisdom teeth extractions services in Maple Ridge. Let the professionals take care of your little ones’ oral hygiene so that they can maintain a healthy and confident smile for years.

Frequently Asked Questions

Food Category

Examples

Notes

Liquids

Water, broths, and apple juice

Stay hydrated and avoid using straws, as the suction can disturb the clot forming at the extraction site.

Soft Fruits

Bananas, apple sauce, and pureed fruits

Choose fruits that don’t require chewing and are not acidic to avoid irritation.

Grains

Oatmeal, mashed potatoes, and soft cooked rice

Ensure grains are well-cooked to a soft consistency for easy consumption without chewing.

Proteins

Scrambled eggs, tofu, and finely ground meats

Opt for protein sources that are soft and easy to swallow without chewing.

Dairy

Yogurt, cottage cheese, and milkshakes

Dairy products are generally safe but avoid too cold or too hot temperatures.

Treats

Ice cream, gelato, and pudding

Enjoy soft treats that don’t require chewing, but avoid anything too sugary to prevent irritation.

To determine if your child’s wisdom teeth need removal, you should:

  • Schedule Regular Dental Check-ups

A dentist will monitor the growth of your child’s wisdom teeth during routine exams and with X-rays.

  • Review X-rays

Dentists use panoramic or digital X-rays to check if wisdom teeth are impacted or could cause future problems.

  • Watch for Symptoms

If your child complains of pain, swelling, or infections in the back of their mouth, it might be due to problematic wisdom teeth.

  • Assess for Impaction

Impacted wisdom teeth, which cannot emerge normally, often require removal to prevent infection, cysts, or damage to other teeth.

  • Check for Crowding

Removal may be necessary if there’s insufficient space in your child’s mouth, which could lead to crowding or damage to other teeth.

  • Consider Preventative Removal

Even without current issues, a dentist may recommend removal to avoid future complications if they anticipate a high risk.

  • Get a Professional Evaluation

For a definitive answer, consult an oral surgeon who can provide a detailed evaluation of your child’s wisdom teeth.

They should rest at home for at least 2-3 days following the procedure. This rest period allows for initial recovery, management of swelling and discomfort, and monitoring for potential complications such as bleeding or infection. 

After this short recovery period, and if they feel up to it, most children can return to school. Yet, they should avoid strenuous physical activity for a week or more.

Provide a Comfortable Rest Area

Create a comfortable space for your child to rest, with extra pillows to keep their head elevated.

Administer Medications as Prescribed

Give any prescribed pain relief or antibiotics as directed by the oral surgeon.

Apply Ice Packs

Reduce swelling by applying ice packs to the cheeks in 15-minute intervals for the first 24-48 hours.

Encourage Fluid Intake

Make sure your child stays hydrated by drinking plenty of water, but remember to avoid using straws.

Offer Appropriate Foods

Provide soft foods that don’t require chewing, based on the provided food list, and avoid hot or spicy items.

Maintain Oral Hygiene

Encourage gentle rinsing with warm salt water after meals and starting 24 hours post-surgery, but avoid brushing the surgical sites directly for a few days

Watch for Complications

Keep an eye out for excessive bleeding, persistent pain, or signs of infection, and contact the oral surgeon if these arise.

Schedule Follow-Up Appointments

Attend all post-operative check-ups to ensure your child’s mouth is healing correctly.

  • Persistent or worsening pain several days after the procedure, which is not relieved by pain medication.
  • Increased swelling that doesn’t begin to improve after the first few days.
  • Redness, warmth, or a feeling of heat in the gums around the extraction site.
  • Pus or a bad taste in the mouth; may indicate pus draining from the site.
  • Fever or chills, which are systemic signs of infection.
  • Difficulty opening the jaw, known as trismus, could be a sign of infection in the muscles.
  • Foul breath that persists despite proper oral hygiene.
  • Lymph nodes in the neck becoming tender or swollen.

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