Wisdom Teeth - Portland,OR

Updated on April 24, 2008
D.J. asks from Portland, OR
4 answers

I still have my wisdom teeth and various dentists throughout the years have tried to get me to get them pulled and I have resisted, but now I'm thinking of giving in since they're just causing more problems with the surrounding teeth and are getting cavities themselves.

My question is, for those of you who have had it done, what was your experience like? I'm really scared to do it!

Second question, do you have an oral surgeon to recommend?

I actually have only 3 wisdom teeth because a crazy dentist I used to see decided to just yank one out while I was numb in the chair one day. Luckily, I was able to stop him before he did the other three! Since he was able to pull it out pretty easily, I have a feeling the others will come out easily too and it won't be a very complicated procedure...but I'm still scared!

Thanks for your help, ladies!

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So What Happened?

I finally had the three teeth pulled on Friday and it went great. Thanks to everyone who wrote. I ended up doing the IV sedation and I'm really glad I did. I recommend it for anyone who is considering it--really makes things go smoothly, although it's not cheap!

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answers from Portland on

Go ahead and get them pulled! Get it over with. But don't be frugal with the pain meds. A good first "loading" dose (twice the normal dose) then take one every four hours for 48 hours. Have it done on Friday and be sure someone is around to baby you and take care of your toddler!

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answers from Portland on

I am 38 and just had the upper two pulled exactly three weeks ago. I am new to the area and my ND recommended Abe Dental.

Dr. Abe was wonderful during the procedure. I was really scared to have it done. I chose laughing gas as my only method of sedation. I was too afraid to be completely knocked out as I wanted to know exactly what was happening. If I didn't feel comfortable, I just raised my hand and she would adjust things.

I did develop a little bit of dry socket, which I believe has more to do with my age. I had to call her twice on the weekend, and she was quick to return my calls. I also had to have the socket packed a few times, and they worked me in ASAP.

Even with the dry socket, I still had a wonderful experience. My left tooth was difficult, but she used skill to get it out. She didn't jump on my chest and just yank...LOL.

Here's a link to her web page: http://abedental.net/

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answers from Portland on

I too was in your saaem situation :(. I waited to have mine pulled and ended up having to have my two 12 year molars on top pulled as well.

As for my experience it was great. I went Dr. Rodney Nichols in Milwaukie and he was FANTASTIC!!!! He explains what he is going to do, and how it does it and you also have teh option of being completely put under (that is what I chose).

Hope this helps.


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answers from Portland on

Feeling scared is usual when we face an unknown, especially when it concerns our health. I've had several surgeries over the years and was scared to death with the first one. I was only mildly anxious over the last one.

Both myself and my daughter have had our wisdom teeth pulled while 17 and 18. It's too bad you didn't let the dentist pull them all when he pulled the first one. Maybe you stopped him because of fear? I don't know of anyone who still has their wisdom teeth. They almost always cause problems as we age.

I had mine pulled with a local anesthetic. My daughter had a general anesthetic. She doesn't remember anything about the surgery. My teeth were pulled by a dentist in general practice. Hers were pulled by an oral surgeon. I'm making that comparison because of the difference in our experiences. I remember mine being "no big deal." I was told it was a minor procedure that didn't require "surgery." My daughter was told that this is surgery and so she was frightened. She was also miserable for a couple days while recovering from the anesthesia.

I don't understand why it is necessary now to have a surgeon pull teeth. Surgeons are much more expensive. I had a tooth that needed a cap a few years ago and I was sent to a specialist who ended up pulling that tooth. If I'd had a cap it would cost nearly $2000. I have several caps and all of them were put in by a general dentist. The difference in price is astonishing even when compared with updated prices for the previous caps.

The primary source of pain when one has wisdom teeth pulled is caused by a dry socket, if you get one. If you take care of the socket as directed it is unlikely that you will get a dry socket. My daughter smoked the next day after and had a dry socket. She was miserable for days.

Do you know why you're so scared? If you can figure that out then you can get reassurance about the issue that is most concerning for you.
I've known several people who've had their wisdom teeth pulled and they all had an OK experience. Yes, there is some pain. My daughter and I only took otc pain relievers and were fine. The socket heals in a short time if you keep it moist all of the time. They'll tell you how to do that.

How much pain you feel will be related to how sensitive to pain you are. I can tell you the pain of having teeth pulled is minor in comparison to the pain of surgeries and child birth.

Pulling teeth is not life threatening and if you're having difficulty with your teeth now you'll be glad you had them pulled. They always tell you that anesthesia can result in complications including death. But the chance is very minimal. They just have to say that to manage litigation possibilities.

Anesthesia has gotten better over the years. My last major surgery was a few years ago. I had twilight anesthesia for a couple of the diagnostic procedures and woke up quickly feeling alert. I didn't remember anything about the procedure. This is the most likely anesthetic that they will give you since they're pulling 3 teeth at once. I would choose twilight anesthesia if I were to have my wisdom teeth pulled again and have them all taken out at once.

If you are frightened to the point that it interferes with your day to day life you can ask for an anxiety relief med. I discovered that I couldn't complete an MRI. They gave me Valium before the next attempt and it helped a whole lot.

Sometimes our fears pop up and surprise us. I've had several major surgeries and had very little difficulty with fear in comparison to the fear I felt going into the MRI. The fear was irrational but real. If you're having that sort of fear ask for Valium or some such med. It is not habit forming if taken for a short period of time. At 65 I believe in being as kind to myself as possible. As a youth I "toughed" it out. I'm glad that I have to do that less often now. Thanks to modern medicine.

You will be OK. You'll want to slow down for a few days and the gauze in the socket is uncomfortable. All of that is really minor in comparison to child birth. You survived that.

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