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Wisdom teeth -- slightly off topic

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October 13th, 2009, 06:33 PM
Quantum_Leap's Avatar frequent flier
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Seattle area, Washington
Posts: 9,756
I still have all four of my wisdom teeth. I have had them since high school. Every dentist that I have seen since then (there are a surprising number) has ordered me to get them extracted, and, through various ruses, I have managed to escape this fate. I have never had any sort of surgery (other than a small episiotomy after Charlie's birth), never undergone general anesthesia, and I am terrified of the pain that a wisdom teeth extraction will entail.

Yesterday, I went to a new dentist for my annual check-up and was once again "urged" (more like ordered) to get these teeth removed. This time, the dentist says that I have a cavity in one of them. She doesn't want to bother to drill it, she just wants to take it out. And, if I am going to have one tooth taken out (so she says), then I might as well get the other three done at the same time.

Now, I have done a fair amount of research on this issue, admittedly with the express purpose of arming myself with evidence to fend off the overzealous dentists. Any research that suggests that wisdom teeth removal is benficial, I generally ignore (really, you have no idea how terrified I am of this procedure). That said, what I have found says that (a) wisdom tooth removal is the most over-prescribed invasive surgery in America, and, (b) if your wisdom teeth come in straight then there is no real reason to have them removed at all (three of my teeth are straight, but the one with the cavity isn't).

Please tell me about your wisdom teeth-related experiences. Have all of you had yours removed? If not, how did you get out of it? What compelling arguments can you offer me to use against my dentist when I inevitably call to cancel the appointment I made for next week?

Anxiously awaiting!

Thank you to the SSMC makers for my beautiful siggies!

(x2)(x2)(October 2011)
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October 13th, 2009, 06:56 PM
AMDG's Avatar Margaret
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Denver metro area
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I had mine removed - they were not coming in straight though. When I had them removed I was in college and they were basically aimed sideways and would have messed up my other teeth. It was the only time I have ever been put under general anesthesia. I was scared to death to be put under but I came out of it just fine.

What made my experience bad was that my oral surgeon kind of started stalking me. I was home from college for Christmas break and he called my parents house past 11pm a few nights in a row after my surgery just to "ask me how I was feeling" then after I went back to school he got my phone number from my parents ( I hadn't told them about his late night calls because I didn't want to freak them out) and called me for weeks until I switched my number. Don't know why I didn't report him - I was young and busy living the college life I guess. That's my fun wisdom teeth story!
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October 13th, 2009, 07:03 PM
*Jillian*'s Avatar Baby #3 on the way
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Location: Alabama
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I needed mine removed in high school because they came in sideways and pushed up against my back teeth. I never had pain. I also didn't have insurance and so I just ignored it.

Fast forward 5 years and I got married and got insurance and still ignored it until my dentist finally said that my wisdom teeth were ruining my alignment. I told him I never had pain but from the x rays I knew it looked bad. So I had all 4 surgically removed. It wasn't pleasant (except for the getting knocked out part)! That was heavenly sleep. It rocked.

Anyway, not having my wisdom teeth taken out caused me to have a root canal in one of the back teeth from damage the sideways wisdom tooth did. It killed the tooth but the weak spot was under the gum so I never felt it....plus I didn't realize it had killed my nerve endings too. So I had a root canal and learned that until they did it they didn't realize so much damage had been done. I ended up having the tooth removed

Bottom line is wisdom teeth are big and weak teeth. They might have room but it will change your alignment eventually (in all cases I have heard of anyway). They are also prone to decay because the enamel doesn't tend to be as strong. Do what you gotta do, but don't be scared of anesthesia because that was honestly the best part.

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October 13th, 2009, 07:32 PM
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I had to have mine removed when I was 18 because they were going to ruin the rest of my teeth, and the roots were impacted into my facial bones.

I've had several surgeries, anesthesia doesn't scare me at all anymore. I had all 4 of mine surgically out in the same day, might as well get it all done in one whack. Recovery wasn't so great, I thought it would be fun to have chocolate pudding for every meal for a while but I actually got sick of it! lol

Personally, if I'd had that many doctors all tell me the same thing, I'd follow their advice.
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October 13th, 2009, 07:35 PM
beck12's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: Michigan
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My Dh still has three of his. As far as I know he never was urged to take them out. HIs alignment is awesome (I am jealous) - and the one he had pulled was earlier this year (he is 37) and it was because it was cheaper than fixing it & the dentist gave him an either/or option so he took the "pulling" option. If they are all the way through you don't have to be put out normally. Most people I knwo didn't go under anesthetic. Mine were a nightmare case, so I won't go into details, but they never even made it through - they grew in place, buried in my jaw & causing LOTS of problems...so I had pretty serious surgery, including removing a tumor from my sinus cavity that it caused. I have never known anyone else that had that kind of mess of a situation with theirs though.
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October 13th, 2009, 08:05 PM
glasscandie's Avatar What I make is what I am
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I haven't had mine removed. My dentist urged me to do it as well, but I don't see the point - they're not messing up my other teeth, they're just still there, which is apparently an anomaly in this day and age lol Basically our conversation goes like this: "You still have your wisdom teeth - you should get them removed." "No thanks, just clean my teeth and fill any cavities."

You don't *have* to do anything you don't want to do.
I predict a riot.
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October 13th, 2009, 08:16 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 2,090
I had to have mine removed. They were causing so much pain and were coming in sideways. I remember actually teething on objects to help the pain, it HURT.

Since they were coming in sideways, when I got them removed they had to have these little things inserted into the holes because they caused my teeth to shift so much that my dentist feared my teeth would shift again and my back teeth would go into the hole that my wisdom teeth created... seriously they messed up my mouth BAD.

I was awake for my procedure, and was shaking so much from fear and just being cold despite having like 4 blankets on me and a heating blanket. I was just freaked out. I didn't feel a thing though. I healed wonderfully, got lots of pain meds, and mouth felt SO MUCH better. I was pissed my parents wanted me to take my teeth out, I was seriously so scared even though I hurt so bad from my teeth coming in. But after the procedure it was amazing how much better I felt from my teeth finally out. No more headaches, no more needing to gnaw on teething rings, lol.
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October 13th, 2009, 08:22 PM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
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Location: New Jersey
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I'd question why they want you to remove them. If they think there's a problem then it might be worth it to get it done but if they just think you should get them out to save yourself from any future problems I probably wouldn't worry about it.

I had one done that had a cavity in it. The dentist I went to for that was an idiot and because it was only one they didn't put me to sleep for it. I later had problems with the other 3 (2 were impacted and 1 had a small cavity) so I had them all pulled by an oral surgeon who knocked me out for it. I spent 2 days in a Percocet haze and slept a lot. But they healed up pretty quickly.

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October 13th, 2009, 08:56 PM
Posts: n/a
I still have mine too and many dentists are suprised. Most people are younger when they get them and they cause great pain.

I've had dentists telling me I should have them removed for many years, supposedly doing them younger is easier on people and they recover better.

Well in the last year they've started to hurt. A LOT. So I just may have to bite the bullet and have them done. Mine are such that I'll need to be hospitalised and my jaw broken to get to them. Small jaw and the bottle 2 are lodged under my lower jaw. Which is why I have waited.

The good news being that because it'll be done in the hospital its covered by OHIP so it wont cost me the $1500-2000 to remove all 4 of them, which I can't aford.
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October 13th, 2009, 09:09 PM
**Badfish**'s Avatar Worth Saving
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I had mine removed when I was 16. They hadn't even broken the surface yet, so it was really invasive. The teeth had to be broken up in my jaw and then extracted. They were pulled so they didn't screw up my alignment after getting thousands of dollars of orthodontic work done. It was an easy recovery with hardly any pain. I was put under general anesthesia for it.

My DH did not have his removed. Last month, one of his abscessed and then ruptured. The infection got into his blood stream and it was very close to being life threatening by the time he went in. He had to be on penicillin for two weeks before having it pulled. The infection also got into the neighboring molar, but he didn't get it pulled at the same time as the wisdom tooth because we were trying to save money. He's back on penicillin and needs to schedule that extraction. If we could afford it, we would get all of them pulled at once instead of one at a time as they abscess.

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October 13th, 2009, 10:58 PM
Nekinna2402's Avatar Anniken <3 Tanja
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I'm Getting mine.. owie not the most pleasant feeling but as far as i know they are growing in straight.

They aren't even fully in yet and already i have had dentiest/people tell me to get them out ASAP.
(this is also because under 18yrs dental is free, 18-21? is about half cost)
Anniken - 20 years - Mama to 4 year old -student - Norway

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October 13th, 2009, 11:17 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 2,090
Originally Posted by Jess is Write View Post
I had mine removed when I was 16. They hadn't even broken the surface yet, so it was really invasive. The teeth had to be broken up in my jaw and then extracted. They were pulled so they didn't screw up my alignment after getting thousands of dollars of orthodontic work done. It was an easy recovery with hardly any pain. I was put under general anesthesia for it.
Mine were done the same way, but I was awake. Talk about terrifying. I didn't feel a **** thing, but holy crap man, that procedure sucked big time. I don't remember what they gave me beforehand, it was some kind of pill, but HOLY CRAP! I was in lala land, totally dead to the world but awake looking at it, lol.
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October 14th, 2009, 04:34 AM
Gina1978's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: Mallorca (Spain)
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I had 2 taken out about 3 years ago.Beleive me,I was TERRIFIED.I was the sort of person who couldent sleep the night before I went to the dentist,even if I was just having a filling!
My wisdom teeth were pushing my other teeth out of their place,and for months,my whole jaw/head ached,but I didnt know why.Once I was told I needed them out,I wanted it done as soon as possible because I knew that if I had too long to think about it,Id chicken out!

Anyway,as affraid as I was,the whole thing was pretty easy! I was wide awake,and the noises/crunching sensation was the only thing that bothered me (take an MP4 player if you´re going to be awake! lol).
But,I didnt feel a thing and it was over within 10 minutes.I was told that my face would swell,and that I could have some bruising on my cheeks afterwards,but even the recovery was EASY.I took painkillers for about 3 days,but not because I was in pain..I just took them incase kwim?

I know that some people have different experinces,but mine was very easy,and since then,Im pretty OK about going to the dentist.The one thing I had always feared was having a tooth out,mand being as that wasnt a negative exerience,Im not affraid anymore

You´ll be fine! Its not that bad at all.

Thank you SO much for my new siggy Julia (Julka)!

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October 14th, 2009, 05:55 AM
Tammyjh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: North
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I still have mine and although I have had a lot of dental work over the years, I've never had a dentist urge me to have them taken out. They've never bothered me so they're still there.
Tammy, Mom to
Abby (19), Kacie (13), Chase (11), & Jacob (7)

"...They're supposed to make you miserable! That's why they're family!" ~ Bobby ~ Supernatural
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October 14th, 2009, 09:27 AM
gctattoo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I've had one wisdom tooth removed. It was decaying and the pain was killing me. I was a happy person the day they ripped that tooth out of my head.

I have another that's also going bad. I figure I have a few more months until it's imperative I have that removed as well. The other two might be removed at the same time, depending upon the insurance and cash situation at the moment. I'd like to nip any future problems in the bud.

If you have any wisdom teeth giving you pain, it's best to just yank 'em IMO. But I don't agree with the notion you should get them all done at the same time unless you just really want to. Some people have problems with them in while others don't.
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October 14th, 2009, 10:15 AM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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I only have one, and it's removal is such a serious surgery that they're avoiding doing it at any cost. I'd absolutely love to have normal ones so they could come out... someday this one will have to and I'm afraid of the outcome.

for anyone who wants to know mine is above my sinus just behind the lip of my cheek bone. They can't go in and get it anyway other than removing my entire cheek and scooping it out (or drilling into my face and replacing it with metal mesh, but I'd have a HUGE scar from that one, and less of one from the other) I'm guaranteed to be wired shut for 3 months, but more like 6, and I will have scars along my hair line, temple and ear from where they have to cut the skin away to peel it back. Trust me, anything is beter than this!
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October 14th, 2009, 03:24 PM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Finland
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I'm 32 years old and my bottom ones are still blissfully resting inside my gums. The upper two are out, they were yanked shortly after they surfaced one at a time. In my younger years I begged several dentists to have them cut out but no one would.

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October 14th, 2009, 04:14 PM
BraydensMama's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I had mine out at one time, with local anestesia. The worst part was the cracking of them coming out! It was not a pleasant sound. I wasn't in pain though. Some people have worse recoveries, too. Mine was mild. Others will find blood on their pillow when they wake up. My brothers were impacted so he had to go to an oral surgeon. He had heavy duty pain meds after that and it was expensive.
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October 18th, 2009, 09:01 AM
Quantum_Leap's Avatar frequent flier
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Thanks, ladies. I've ultimately decided to bite the bullet and get just the one tooth taken out (the one that has a cavity in it). I have an appointment for this Monday. Wish me luck!

Thank you to the SSMC makers for my beautiful siggies!

(x2)(x2)(October 2011)
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October 18th, 2009, 09:02 AM
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Good luck!!! It will be fine, you'll see!
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