Wisdom tooth removal fear

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lsj2

Junior member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
7
I'm trying to decide whether to get my lower and upper wisdom tooth (on left side) removed. I'm 32 and thought I had avoided it but I've been having reccurent infections in the lower one and the upper one is growing out into my cheek. I have severe anxiety particularly around dental treatment (even getting a check up is an ordeal for me) so naturally this isn't the best news! My dentist has suggested IV sedation which I'll definitely go for but I'm still terrified about:

1. The actual op (pain, complications e.g. nerve damage)
2. Recovery (hate blood, pathetically low pain tolerance, dry socket risks)

I've read lots of the forums on here but I still can't get my head around putting myself through it (and also having to pay A LOT of money to do it!).

Any advice or support on risks/post-op recovery would be super helpful (i.e. REASSURANCE SEEKING!).
 
M

Mageris

Junior member
Joined
Mar 7, 2018
Messages
17
Hello,

I see that you're new and since I just had my wisdom teeth out this past Monday, I thought I'd offer some words of encouragement. Iv sedation is very quick and easy. Honestly with as severe as my anxiety is, I sometimes wish I could get it for all my appointments. You just feel really sleepy and go to sleep and then feel like you're waking up a few minutes later when in reality it's between 30 minutes to an hour. You'll feel kind of out of it, still groggy, maybe even a bit confused but you won't say anything odd most likely. However, you won't remember much that day and sometimes you can have small side effects from the anesthesia like a bit of nausea or a headache. The operation I would argue is actually the easy part.

Recovery can be a bit more complicated. I don't want to lie or say anything that is misleading but most of the time recovery is very straightforward and over after a week or two if you follow after care instructions carefully. I would like to promise this is a 100% guarantee but unfortunately I cannot. Every case is different and all we can do is take it day by day and be patient with ourselves. I was going through similar issues as you but I had 4 teeth out instead of 2 and my extractions were not difficult. The teeth prior to extraction were however, constantly being hit with infection and I was practically living off of antibiotics for several months because of it. This was my complication because while the operation was simple enough, I waited too long and my body is having a hard time recovering due to slow healing and I'm believing some now evident nerve damage resulting in sensitivity and pain that has been moving all over my mouth since yesterday. Before that, I was fine with hardly any swelling or stiffness past the 2nd day (drink a lot of pineapple juice!).

Even so, I don't regret doing the surgery and know that in time, the pain and other issues will pass. It's better than living with infection that can kill if left untreated. Now I'm hoping my nerve damage isn't permanent because it's affecting my ability to eat, sleep, and talk. Which is why it's currently 5 am and I'm up writing in the forum lol. I'm thinking I'll call my surgeon office in a few hours and tell them about my issue or see my general dentist and at least rule out that it is anything else going on. Best of luck, you got this.
 
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Natural_

Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2021
Messages
34
I've had a few conversations with my dentist and the surgeon that will be removing my upper wisdom teeth, today the process is extremely simple and fast, and with IV sedation you literally won't remember it. I was sort of embarassed that I had avoided the dentist for so long that I would need them removed at an "older" age than is normal (i'm also 32), but he was like, "Oh no, over half of my removals are for people over 30."

The conversation had me so confident, I was talked into doing it awake with just local and I'm terrified of pain.

99.9% of the time wisdom teeth removal is simple and without complication, with most of the 0.01% being nothing serious.

You've got to remember that people don't generally do write ups out of the blue telling people how easily they had their wisdom teeth removed, even though it's a common procedure that happens all the time to people of all ages.

There is also going to be a bit of negative experience bias, even on a place like this. A lot of people ignore their teeth until something catastrophic happens, and once it hits that stage things get complicated, that usually fuels anxiety and has them seek out places such as this. People who have longer treatment paths (meaning more severe issues) are also likely to stay in the community for support, whereas someone who goes to the dentist, has anxiety lessoned, and gets a couple of wizzys popped out, is much like likely to stay around and tell about it. Even then, you have an entire sub-forum for wisdom tooth success stories.

There is a big difference between, "my wisdom teeth have some minor recurring inflammation/infection issues" and "I needed to get my wisdom teeth pulled because of severe infection". From what I have been told, your lower wisdom teeth are more likely to get food and stuff stuck in the surrounding tissue and are more likely to get inflamed and uncomfortable. Unless you've been to the dentist each time you've had an infection and have had it diagnosed as such such, there's a good possibility you're just having normal wisdom tooth stuff happening (discomfort/redness/inflammation) and you're finding out why dentists wanna yank em.
 
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L

lsj2

Junior member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
7
Thank you both so much - so kind of you to respond. I'm really worried about the potential for nerve damage - I had a scan and to me (very aware I'm not medically trained!) the root looked very close to the nerve. I know I couldn't live with permanent nerve damage (I had nearly daily nerve pain in my scalp for almost a year and it sent me over the edge) and I'm wondering whether I'm just better off not taking the risk! I worry that my dentist is just a bit blasé and just saying 'ah take them out it's no big deal' but maybe I'm being unfair!
 
N

Natural_

Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2021
Messages
34
Thank you both so much - so kind of you to respond. I'm really worried about the potential for nerve damage - I had a scan and to me (very aware I'm not medically trained!) the root looked very close to the nerve. I know I couldn't live with permanent nerve damage (I had nearly daily nerve pain in my scalp for almost a year and it sent me over the edge) and I'm wondering whether I'm just better off not taking the risk! I worry that my dentist is just a bit blasé and just saying 'ah take them out it's no big deal' but maybe I'm being unfair!

Nerve damage from wisdom tooth removal is so incredibly rare that I didn't even have it on my radar until I came here, and trust me, I am extremely thorough when it comes to searching for things that can feed my anxiety lol.

When I was in the dentist chair yesterday, immediately after my cleaning, my wife and I both made a point to ask for the 19th time about wisdom tooth removal, and everything that was said talks about how easy and simple the process is.

These things seem to get a bad wrap, particularly root canals and wisdom tooth removal. I've yet to speak to anyone since I've delved into this world that has run into issues without having them previously. Remember, you're ahead of the game here, you're not running to the dentist because your jaw is swollen to the size of an apple and you're spiking a fever and leaking pus, you've made a very wise decision and you're nervous and anxious about it. You got this.
 
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lsj2

Junior member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
7
Thanks so much. I'm on the verge of cancelling because I've read far too much about the horrors of nerve damage now!
 
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Natural_

Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2021
Messages
34
Thanks so much. I'm on the verge of cancelling because I've read far too much about the horrors of nerve damage now!

Also a reminder, that the above person is self-diagnosing their nerve damage and stated they waited far too long to get the procedure and they mention they needed several *months* of cycling different anti-biotics to reduce the infections to a point where the teeth could be removed.

They don't even know if they have nerve damage. Going against medical advice with teeth you've admitted you've had problems with before because you read doomer posts online is a really bad idea.

Removing wisdom teeth is an extremely common procedure. If nerve damage was even remotely common, you wouldn't have to scour the internet to find stories.
 
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lsj2

Junior member
Joined
Oct 19, 2021
Messages
7
Thank you so much for your really helpful response. I've managed to bring the appointment forward so I have less time to dwell on it! Still feel horribly sick at even the thought of it but hopefully it will be ok.
 
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