Why do wisdom teeth hurt and what are the available treatments?

Posted OnApril 7, 2021

Wisdom teeth are the last set of teeth to break through the gums. Some people are lucky to have their wisdom teeth grow straight and without the need to get them removed, and an even smaller number are lucky to not have wisdom teeth at all! 

The pain from wisdom teeth can be constant for some people, while for others, the pain and discomfort is experienced only when they chew food or touch that area. Sometimes, the pain may resolve on its own. Other times, it will need either active home management or treatment in a clinic. Most dental professionals advise that wisdom teeth should be removed before the pain becomes unbearable.

Wisdom teeth normally push their way through the gums of a person in between the age of 17 and 21 years. The sensation of a tooth pushing through the gums can be painful.

In addition to the pain, often there won’t be enough room for the wisdom teeth in the mouth, as the adult teeth have already developed and erupted. Due to the lack of space, the often grow incorrectly, pushing against other teeth, erupting at an angle and sometimes even getting stuck in the jaw bone. 

When this happens, the wisdom teeth are impacted. Having impacted wisdom teeth leaves the gums vulnerable as the surface and the teeth are not fully through. Food and bacteria can get trapped in the gums and lead to several issues, including gum disease, infection and even the formation of cysts and abscesses.

Not surprisingly, your dentist will recommend you to remove your wisdom tooth if they see the potential for these dental problems.

Home Remedies

Impacted wisdom teeth may cause pain and removing it will be the ultimate solution for the aches and tenderness. In the meantime, there are several natural remedies available to reduce the pain. 

Numbing gel – Applying a numbing dental gel may help reduce feeling in the gums and dull the pain. These gels are available over the counter and contain the active ingredient benzocaine.

Most dental gels can be applied directly to the affected gums throughout the day. However, it is important for a person to follow the instructions included in the product.

Ice pack – Applying the ice pack to the jaw can help reduce inflammation and can also give you a numbing effect. A person can try holding an ice pack with a tea towel around it against their jaw for up to 15 minutes.

Salt Water Rinse – Salt water has natural disinfectant properties. Rinsing with salt water may help treat the infection and reduce the discomfort. A person may want to rinse their mouth with salt water two or three times a day, or until the pain starts to reduce.

Cloves – Cloves have shown to relieve pain in most toothaches. They can have a numbing effect on the gums. You can apply clove oil on a cotton ball, place it on the wisdom tooth and leave it there till the pain subsides. 

Wisdom Tooth Extraction Procedure

The wisdom tooth extraction procedure is usually performed under local or general anesthetic. There are many advanced sedation options for wisdom teeth extractions.

The treatment duration depends on the number of teeth to be removed and the severity of the case. Usually, the procedure takes only a few minutes but can last up to 20 minutes. Aftercare instructions are also explained to the patient, along with prescribed medication. 

Whatever the condition that your teeth are in, visiting your dentist regularly can prevent painful circumstances later on. Making sure that you maintain a healthy dental routine along with a healthy diet will keep your mouth healthy and pain-free. Most importantly, make sure that you follow the directions of your dentist. Contact 800-DRJOY(37569) or click here to book an appointment with our expert team of dentists and maintain good oral health.