Are you experiencing severe pain or discomfort in your mouth? Chances are you could be experiencing impacted wisdom teeth. Keep reading to learn more about the symptoms and potential health implications of impacted wisdom teeth, the different types, the cost to remove them, and how long it takes for you to recover if you opt to get them removed.

What Are Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, are the teeth right at the back of the jaw that erupt later than the rest of our teeth, usually when we’re between 17-25 years old. Impacted wisdom teeth are those wisdom teeth that don’t fully emerge through your gums or jawbone.

This situation can lead to a range of oral health concerns, including the risk of infection, tooth decay, and gum disease if left untreated for long periods. In many cases, the recommended course of action for impacted wisdom teeth is surgical removal.

What Are The Different Types of Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

Impacted wisdom teeth are usually categorised into 4 different types based on their orientation and position within the jaw. These include:

Mesial Impaction

Mesial impaction occurs when the wisdom tooth is angled forward, toward the front of the mouth. It may press against the second molar, causing crowding or impaction of that tooth.

Vertical Impaction

Vertical impaction occurs when the wisdom tooth is positioned straight up and down, but it doesn’t fully erupt from the gum line. It may still cause problems if it’s unable to emerge completely.

Horizontal Impaction

Horizontal impaction occurs when the wisdom tooth is oriented horizontally, growing parallel to the jawbone. Horizontal impaction can be particularly painful and problematic.

Distal Impaction

Distal impaction occurs when the wisdom tooth is angled backward, away from the rest of the teeth. This type of impaction is relatively less common but can still lead to complications.

The type of impaction can affect the severity of symptoms and complications associated with impacted wisdom teeth. A Dentist can evaluate the specific orientation and position of your wisdom teeth to determine the most appropriate treatment plan.

How Do I Know If I Have Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

To get a definitive diagnosis of impacted wisdom teeth, you’ll need to get an x-ray by a Dentist. Dental x-rays allow Dentists to obtain a clear view of the wisdom teeth’s development and their alignment within your jaw. These diagnostic tools help identify any obstructions, misalignment, or potential issues associated with your wisdom teeth.

Common Impacted Wisdom Teeth Symptoms

There are a number of symptoms you could be experiencing if you are suffering from impacted wisdom teeth. These include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Swelling of the jaw or face
  • Difficulty opening the mouth
  • Bad breath
  • Unpleasant taste in the mouth
  • Red or swollen gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Pain or discomfort while chewing
  • Headaches
  • Earaches

Keep in mind that not everyone with impacted wisdom teeth will experience all of these symptoms, and the severity may vary from person to person. If you suspect you have impacted wisdom teeth or are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s crucial to consult a Dentist for a proper evaluation.

What Health Problems Can Impacted Wisdom Teeth Cause If Untreated?

Impacted wisdom teeth can lead to a range of oral health problems if left untreated. The most common issues people experience due to wisdom tooth impaction include:

  • Infections
  • Gum disease (periodontal disease), due to the increased exposure to bacteria over time
  • Tooth decay (cavities)
  • Cysts or tumours
  • Pain and discomfort
  • Swelling and inflammation
  • Bad breath
  • Misalignment of adjacent teeth
  • Sinus issues
  • Difficulty in cleaning and maintaining oral hygiene

If you believe you’re experiencing any of these issues, book an appointment at your local Dentist ASAP. These issues can worsen over time if left untreated.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth Removal

The decision to remove impacted wisdom teeth is made on a case by case basis. In many instances, Dentists will recommend extracting your impacted wisdom teeth as a preventive measure to avoid potential health problems in the future. However, if they are fully erupted, properly aligned, and not causing any issues, they may not need to be removed. For some lucky people, their wisdom teeth never erupt at all!

Cost of Impacted Wisdom Teeth Treatment

The cost of impacted wisdom teeth treatment can vary depending on several factors, including the complexity of the extraction or surgical removal and whether you have dental insurance coverage. It’s essential to consult with your Dentist to get a personalised estimate tailored to your specific situation.

At Racecourse Road Dental, we understand that managing dental expenses is important. That’s why we offer convenient options to help make your treatment accessible:

Health Fund Claims

We accept health fund claims through HICAPS, ensuring a seamless and convenient process for our patients with dental insurance coverage.

Payment Plans

For added flexibility, we provide payment plans that make it easier to manage the cost of your wisdom teeth treatment. We offer payment plans through Afterpay and MediPay, allowing you to choose the option that best suits your needs.

Additional Assistance

If you’re exploring alternative financing options, Racecourse Road Dental also works with Smile and SuperCare, further expanding your choices for managing the cost of your dental care.

Our goal is to ensure that you receive the necessary treatment for your impacted wisdom teeth without unnecessary financial stress. Feel free to discuss your payment preferences with our team, and we’ll assist you in finding the solution that aligns with your budget and needs.

How Long Does It Take to Recover After Wisdom Teeth Removal?

The recovery time after wisdom teeth removal varies from person to person, but generally, it takes 3-5 days to recover from basic wisdom teeth removal, and about a week to recover from impacted wisdom teeth removal. There may be swelling still present after this time, but you should be able to resume your usual daily activities at this point. 

It’s important to follow your Dentist’s post-operative care instructions carefully to improve your chances of a smooth recovery.

If you experience severe or prolonged pain, excessive bleeding, signs of infection, or any other unusual symptoms, you should contact one of our qualified & experienced Dentist immediately, as these could be signs of complications. But bear in mind your recovery will be unique to you!

Impacted Wisdom Teeth Removal Cost

The cost of tooth extraction varies depending on the clinic. While it’s worth your time to shop around, you should prioritise choosing a reliable oral surgeon with experience removing impacted wisdom teeth. This will minimise the risk of health complications post procedure. 

While Medicare generally doesn’t cover the cost of impacted wisdom teeth removal in Australia, your private health care plan might cover a portion of the cost.

Other factors that impact the overall price include:

  • Whether it’s a simple or surgical extraction
  • The number of wisdom teeth to be removed
  • The type of anaesthesia or sedation required
  • Your Dentist or oral surgeon’s experience and qualifications

Don’t Wait To Treat Your Impacted Wisdom Teeth​

If you suspect you have impacted wisdom teeth or are experiencing discomfort, booking a consultation with an experienced Dentist is crucial. Ignoring symptoms can lead to further complications, affecting your oral health and overall well-being. 

If you live in the Brisbane region, Give us a call on (07) 3868 1699 or contact us online to book an appointment today.

Our team of experienced & qualified Brisbane Dentists are experts in wisdom teeth removal as well as other procedures such as periodontal disease treatment, root canal treatment, restoration and filling services, and more!