The average age for wisdom teeth removal is between 17 and 25. But for some, it makes sense to have them extracted earlier. If your tween or teen needs braces, for example, your dentist may recommend having your child’s wisdom teeth removed to prevent complications.
William Schiro, DDS, and the rest of us here at Michigan Maxillofacial Surgery and Implant Center want to make sure that both you and your child have a positive experience. We’ve created a list of tips to help you prepare for a wisdom tooth extraction.
Prep for the Big Day
Begin your removal day prep by asking your dentist a few questions. If your child takes medications, you need to know which ones they can, and cannot, take. This prevents an adverse reaction with the anesthesia.
You should also confirm if your child needs to fast. Anesthesia can make people vomit, so many dentists suggest fasting beginning at midnight before the surgery.
It can also be a smart idea to have any prescriptions filled in advance. That way, you have everything ready to go the minute your child gets home.
It’s also smart to create a plan B. Because your child is under 18, a parent or legal guardian needs to be present throughout the procedure. It helps to have a plan B in place in case the unexpected happens.
Before the extraction
Before the procedure, you and your child meet with Dr. Schiro. This is your chance to ask the doctor any questions you or your child have. He explains the procedure and the particulars of your child’s wisdom teeth.
Then you prepare for extraction day. Have your child wear loose clothing and a shirt with short sleeves. The team needs access to your child’s arm to administer the anesthesia.
Looser clothing is more comfortable before, during, and after the procedure. Your teen or tween will be thankful for the ease of removal when their mouth is swollen and sensitive.
During the wisdom tooth removal
Understanding the process of wisdom tooth removal helps prepare your child. During the procedure, we numb the area so that your child doesn’t feel their jaw or the extraction. Dr. Schiro can also provide sedation services to keep your child comfortable.
He cuts into the gum and separates the tissue connecting the tooth to the bone. Then he pulls the tooth and sutures closed the opening that is left.
After the procedure
There are some basic steps that you can take to ensure a smooth recovery. Most importantly, though, always follow the directions that Dr. Schiro provides.
Keep clean gauze on the extraction sites to help prevent bleeding. You also should have your child rinse with warm salt water to help keep their mouth and the extraction site clean. While not harmful if swallowed, it isn’t a pleasant experience.
If your child experiences pain, you can give them an over-the-counter pain reliever, as Dr. Schiro recommends. If they have swelling, you can have them hold an ice pack or frozen veggies to their jaw. They could also eat foods like ice cream or freezer pops to help reduce the swelling.
If they experience nausea from the anesthesia, you can have them sip ginger ale. But don’t give them anything to take orally for at least an hour after surgery.
Schedule an appointment for your child today
Having wisdom teeth removed can sound like a scary thing, but it doesn't have to be. By preparing your child, you can turn their tooth extraction into something they are ready for.
The team here at Michigan Maxillofacial Surgery and Implant Center want to make sure that both you and your child have a smooth experience. We are here to help in any way.
Schedule an appointment today and have your child’s teeth extracted by the highly skilled and compassionate Dr. Schiro.