Wisdom Teeth – Removal & Recovery Guide

Wisdom Teeth – Removal & Recovery Guide


Wisdom teeth are the last adult teeth to erupt. Also known as molars, they grow at the back of the jaw and typically erupt during adulthood. It’s common for people to have their wisdom teeth removed if they pose threats to their physical or oral health. 

If you are anticipating having your wisdom teeth removed, read this article to find out everything you need to know about wisdom teeth and the removal and recovery process.

What Are Wisdom Teeth?


Wisdom teeth are located at the back of the mouth. They have become known as “wisdom teeth” as they are the last of the large grinding teeth to emerge, said to develop when you have “become wiser”. Also known as molars, they have the same function as the other molars in the back of the mouth. While some people do not have issues with these teeth, they can grow irregularly and removal may be required.

Does everyone have wisdom teeth?

Most adults will have wisdom teeth, however, 35% of people are born without any. It can be hard to determine whether or not you have wisdom teeth just from looking inside your mouth – a Dental X-Ray can best detect the status of your wisdom teeth. 

How many wisdom teeth do adults have?

It’s estimated that between 20-25% of people are born with 1-3 wisdom teeth. Of those with wisdom teeth, 85% of wisdom teeth will need to be extracted. Once your wisdom teeth are examined, your Dentist may either recommend removal to avoid harm to your oral health, or monitor your wisdom teeth for potential future problems.

At what age do wisdom teeth come?

Wisdom teeth typically develop in a person’s late teens, between the ages of 17 and 21. Once you reach this age, it’s important to discuss the state of your wisdom teeth with your Dentist. Or, once you exhibit any symptoms of wisdom teeth causing you oral health issues.

Do Wisdom Teeth Have to Come Out?


This is completely dependent on the state of your wisdom teeth. Only a qualified Dentist or Oral Surgeon can determine whether your wisdom teeth will have to be removed, or if they are safe to keep.

Wisdom teeth may not require removal if they have fully erupted, are in healthy condition, do not impact surrounding teeth or bite and are able to be properly cleaned during your daily oral hygiene routine.

Often, however, wisdom teeth are impacted as they may not have room to grow properly or are growing on an angle (sometimes even growing horizontally). This can cause crowding to nearby teeth, resulting in infections, gum disease, damaged bone support and cavities.

Wisdom Teeth Pain Symptoms to Look Out For


Symptoms of an impacted wisdom tooth can include:

  • A stiff or swollen jaw, or jaw pain
  • Red or swollen gums 
  • Bad breath or an unpleasant taste in your mouth
  • Trouble opening your mouth or swallowing
  • Persistent pain, infection or fever
  • Cysts or cavities developing 
  • Cut or bleeding gums
  • Throbbing or pressure at the back of your mouth


For wisdom teeth pain relief, you can use antibiotics, salt rinses and over-the-counter pain relief as a temporary solution. However, consulting your Dentist for a wisdom teeth extraction should be done as soon as possible.

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How Are Wisdom Teeth Removed?


Your Dentist will determine how many wisdom teeth need removal, and how they have formed. This will impact whether your removal can take place in the Dentist’s chair or if it should be done at a hospital.

Before the extraction, you’ll receive either a local or general anaesthetic, or IV sedation. This will make the procedure painless.

During the removal procedure, your Dentist or Oral Surgeon will make an incision in the surrounding gum tissue of the wisdom tooth. Then, they will proceed to remove the tooth or divide the tooth into sections to make it easier to remove in pieces.

How long does wisdom teeth removal take?

This will depend on how many wisdom teeth are being removed, and the type of sedation you require. However, your surgery should take approximately 45 minutes or less.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Recovery Time


Luckily, most people will completely recover from their wisdom teeth surgery in 3-4 days. However, if your extraction was more complicated, it can take up to a week to recover.

Your stitches will typically dissolve after a few days, and your Dentist will likely send you home with gauze pads to soak up excess blood in the mouth.

After the removal of wisdom teeth, it is recommended to take time to recuperate. You should also have over-the-counter pain killers on hand. For a swift recovery, you should avoid vigorous rinsing or brushing and only rinse gently with warm salt water when necessary, such as after meals. 

Most people do not experience any problems after the removal, but if you are worried, consult your dentist.

X-ray of two back wisdom teeth for Brisbane wisdom teeth removal

What to Eat After Wisdom Teeth Removal


It’s super important that what you eat is helping to aid your recovery. Consuming soft foods with the right nutrition will help to limit the risk of post-removal complications, reduce swelling and helps with the healing process.

1-2 days after surgery, you should only be consuming foods that are soft and incredibly easy to chew. If possible, these foods should also contain vitamins and minerals to help you to heal. Consume foods such as:

  • Blended vegetable soups 
  • Savoury broths
  • Unsweetened yoghurt
  • Scrambled eggs 
  • Smoothies 
  • Banana “nice cream”
  • Hummus 
  • Natural jelly


It’s vital to avoid foods that can compromise your wounds, such as crunchy or hard foods, chewy foods, alcohol and spicy food.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Cost Brisbane


The cost of removing your wisdom teeth will depend on a few factors, such as how many teeth require removal and whether you can receive the extraction in your Dentists’ chair or in a Hospital Surgery. Here at Brisbane Smiles, we provide Payment Plans and Options to work with you to access the best treatment.

Wisdom Teeth FAQs


How painful is wisdom teeth removal?

Most people won’t experience any pain during surgery, thanks to anaesthetic and sedation. The majority of people also won’t experience pain post-surgery either. It’s most common to experience swelling and some slight discomfort for 1-3 days post-surgery, however, if you follow your Dentists’ instructions for recovery, you should heal with ease.

When can I start eating solid food after wisdom teeth?

It’s recommended to only consume soft foods and liquid 1-2 days after surgery. Once you start to feel better, begin to incorporate safe solid foods (that aren’t crunchy or hard) such as oatmeal or salmon.

What happens if you don’t remove wisdom teeth?

If your Dentist recommends removal and you fail to do so, the impact of your wisdom teeth can result in decay and resorption of healthy teeth. It can impact the functioning of your jaw, and crowd teeth.

What causes infection after wisdom teeth removal?

After removal, there is a risk of infection. This is most common if you have an empty or dry socket, and the socket fills with debris and bacteria. This can lead to pain, swelling, bleeding and infection. To prevent this, it’s important to follow the instructions of your Dentist for post-care.

How to sleep after wisdom teeth removal

Depending on the severity of your removal, you may need to sleep on your back for 2-7 days. This is to limit the pressure put on the affected area. 

Can I go to work the next day after wisdom tooth extraction?

It’s recommended to take off the following day or two after surgery. To aid your recovery, it’s important to take it easy and rest as much as possible in the days after your removal.

How soon can I receive wisdom teeth removal Brisbane?

Here at Brisbane Smiles, we offer Emergency Dental services for wisdom tooth removal Brisbane. Get in touch with our friendly team and we will find a time for a wisdom tooth consultation as soon as possible.

Take Care of Your Wisdom Teeth with Brisbane Smiles


If you’re nearing the age where your wisdom teeth emerge or are worried about the state of your wisdom teeth, don’t put off consulting a Dentist. The sooner you address your wisdom teeth, the less you put your oral health at risk. 

Get in touch with the friendly, gentle and expert team of Dentists and Oral Health Experts at Brisbane Smiles today!

call brisbane smiles 38703333Call 3870 3333

brisbane smiles dentist in toowong brisbane book an appointmentBook Appointment

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