Wisdom tooth pain can be an uncomfortable experience that many individuals face during their late teens or early adulthood. These third molars often emerge during this stage of life, but they can also become impacted, causing additional challenges. When there isn’t enough room for wisdom teeth to fully erupt, they may grow in crooked or become trapped beneath the gum or against neighboring teeth. While not all impacted teeth cause pain, discomfort can indicate a problem that requires the attention of a skilled dentist.
Seeking Professional Help: The First Step
If you are experiencing wisdom tooth pain, it is crucial to reach out to a dentist promptly. Pain in wisdom teeth can sometimes be attributed to an infection, particularly in the case of partially erupted wisdom teeth – those that are partially visible above the gumline. Bacteria can easily infiltrate the exposed area, leading to infection and the formation of an abscess, resulting in swelling and pain. In such instances, timely extraction of the wisdom teeth becomes necessary.
Addressing Discomfort at Home
While immediate dental attention is essential, there are steps you can take at home to alleviate discomfort temporarily. Over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) can help reduce minor to moderate pain while also alleviating swelling and inflammation. Additionally, a simple pain-relieving rinse made by dissolving salt in warm water and swishing it in your mouth for 30 seconds can provide relief. Alternatively, topical pain relievers containing benzocaine, available at drug stores, can temporarily numb the affected area.