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Most adolescents have four wisdom teeth residing deep in the gum tissues at the back of the mouth. These vestigial third molars are typically of no use in the modern human mouth. Indeed, most people lack the sufficient space to allow the teeth to fully emerge, without complications. Even if one or two do manage to erupt from the surface of the gums, they can be hard to reach for brushing and flossing, which can lead to tooth decay and gum disease problems.

To prevent these problems, the oral care specialists at Robinson Wolfgramm Dental’s Provo, Utah clinic commonly recommend having wisdom teeth extracted in late adolescence. Sometimes, this can be done without full sedation. However, if one or more wisdom teeth have become impacted or otherwise trapped deep within your gums, we might recommend a surgical extraction with deep sedation.

Should this prove to be the case, they will need a ride home, while the sedative effect gradually dissipates. After the extraction, you should encourage your son or daughter to provide mindful care or the healing gums.

It’s natural, and even expected for a little blood to weep from the sutured gums for the first few days. They can control the bleeding by biting down lightly on a rolled-up piece of sterile gauze. Once the bleeding stops, a gentle rinse with lukewarm salt water can remove any stray blood from their mouth.

Our oral surgeons typically recommend sticking to a soft foods diet while the gums are healing. At the same time, they should avoid drinking beverages with a straw. The increased suction could accidentally pull blood clots loose or cause a dry socket to form.

Tobacco use can easily irritate healing gum tissues. This increases recovery time and greatly increases their chances of developing an infection. If you know or suspect your son or daughter uses tobacco, you might want to have a candid discussion with them to quit. Your primary physician might be able to help you develop a successful cessation program for them.

If you live in the Provo, Utah area and you’re contemplating having your son or daughter’s wisdom teeth removed, you should call 801-373-2060 to set up a consultation at Robinson Wolfgramm Dental’s clinic.