Tell me your wisdom tooth extraction stories!

Hi Dopers! Long time no lurky/posty but I’ve been busy with my first year of grad school. Future librarians unite!!!

So I just went through oral hell. The two lower wisdom teeth were impacted and causing infection, and the upper right was decayed (mostly because it had never occured to me to do that flip-top head thing to brush behind it, like in the Reach brand toothbrush commercial). Only the two impacted ones were covered by insurance, so I scheduled to have the third pulled free-of-chage in my dentist’s office.

Well, last Monday I get to the appointment at the oral surgeon’s expecting to have nothing to pay for – I CAN’T pay for anything, I just paid for summer classes! – and I’m immediately hit up for the $450 anesthesiology fee. After crying on my fiancee’s shoulder in the lobby, I secure a temp loan from him to pay the fee and proceed with the surgery. Since the third tooth will only be $215 on top of the anesthesiology, I say “what the hell” and agree to have that one pulled too. Might as well get it done all at once.

They put me under, and after what seems like seconds later I’m awake again and staggering to the little recovery bench. I have no pain for the first 24 hours, though the local anesthetic sure takes a long time to wear off. In fact, 48 hours after the surgery, my entire lower left lip, chin and teeth are still numb! I’m dribbling food and water on myself like and idiot. I call the oral surgeon in a panic, and he calls me in the next morning for a quick consultation.

“As I told you before the surgery,” he says (NO HE DIDN’T TELL ME BEFOREHAND!!!), “the left root was sitting right atop a nerve and was pretty difficult to get out. So the root is pinching the nerve that controls your lower jaw, causing the numbness. IT CAN TAKE WEEKS TO MONTHS TO GO AWAY. Just wait it out.”

Oh, lordy. I got a second opinion from my doc, and he says it’s perfectly normal and if it’s still bothering me in a few weeks to make an appointment with him. In the meantime, I’m drinking liquids at work with a straw, I can’t talk without biting my lip, and my smile is pretty darn lopsided.

As for poetential permanent damage? I talked to a friend whom I’ve known for 9 years, and I just now found out he has permanent numbness in the same areas as me. He has to be careful when he shaves or he slices skin right off. I am thinking positively that mine will wear off eventually, and hey, it could be a lot worse – I could be in agonizing pain instead.

OK DOPERS: I want your wisdom tooth extraction hell stories, please! The more macabre, the better! Let’s wallow in self-pity with one another!!!

Oh, dear, I’m afraid I’m the polar opposite of macabre.

I was a senior in high school. I had all four extracted at once. Mom drove me to to the dentist, they knocked me out, I snoozed in the car on the way home, and I don’t remember any pain.

Maybe someone else can come up with The Macabre.

Since I went to the dentist on my bicycle, I got a local, instead of general. I had the right ones taken out first and a couple years later the left ones. The right ones came out with no trouble. I didn’t even bother filling the pain pills prescription.

The left ones also came out without any trouble, but the left lower got a “dry hole”, and wouldn’t heal. It hurt quite a bit. I go a prescription for 800 Mg (Advil?). That helped, but after a couple days of those, I had a bad stomach ache. I went back to the dentist and he stuffed a tape soaked in oil of clove into the hole. That stopped the pain and everything healed up quickly.

I don’t care much for cloves anymore though.

Try Seach on this one; we’ve done this about 4 times that I can remember.

Got all 4 done when I was 17-ish. Total non-event. Spent a groggy afternoon from the anaesthetic, ate soft food for 2 days & was ops-normal after that. Mouth was sore for a couple days, but I only took, IIRC about 6 aspirin total over the “ordeal” and nothing stronger.

Three visits to the dentist, and fully conscious for all three. Upper left and lower right out together first, then just the lower left - because the dentist had to drill away most of my jaw to get at it - and then upper right on its own. My gums bled for a good 24 hours after each of the lower extractions; I had to keep a bucket at the side of my bed (doesn’t blood taste horrible?). Plus somehow the dentist managed to rip open each cheek, requiring three or four stitches. Hurt like hell before, during and after the procedure, despite what seemed like 6 or 7 phials of anaesthetic. I was numb from the top of my head to my shoulder but retained complete feeling inside my mouth. The cracking noises as the dentist levered away at the lower ones were terrible. The upper ones, in contrast, popped out with very little effort, since they’re not embedded in bone like the lower ones are.

I received absolutely no advice about how to stem the bleeding or ease the pain (I can’t take aspirin and there was little else available back in those dark days).

But, then again, my dentist had just returned following a 2 or 3 years spell in gaol, having been convicted on numerous charges of fraud. The system used to be that the National Health Service paid dentists per filling, per extraction etc. When they audited Mr Patel’s books, they found that he had claimed to have taken out and filled about 4 times as many teeth as there existed in his patients’ mouths. But since his offence wasn’t directly related to denistry, he was free to continue practising when he was released from Wormwood Scrubs.

I suspect that (a) his technique was a little rusty and (b) he was taking out his anger on his patients in general and, for some reason, me in particular.

That was in September nineteen seventy-seven, when I was 17, and I am sure you won’t be surprised that I have not been to a dentist since.

Might as well tell my story…
About two months ago I got my upper and lower wisdom teeth removed from the left side of my mouth. I went to an oral surgeon, and when I woke up, part of my face was numb (ironically, not the part were they removed the teeth.) I figured it was fom the anesthesia, and it would go away, it didn’t. So I called my Dr., and he let me know that it happens sometimes, and did a follow up exam. This is when he told me that it could take several months for feeling to be restored, but that most times patients get partial if not full feeling back. He also told me it would be a slow process, because the nerve in question grows about a millimeter a day. This is when he told me about patients that he has had that are still healing 18 months later. Comforting thought, huh? Eventually, the numbness faded somewhat, although I have no where close to complete feeling back. However, this is when the pain began to start. I had to switch from an electric toothbrush to a manual one, and it still is agony brushing my teeth. It hurts to put make-up on that part of my face. So I go to the oral surgeon, he is concerned because it is not uniform pain. So he took X-rays to look for cavities (all clear), sent me to the dentist (all clear), and now is referring me to a micro-nerve specialist. He says that at this point he has done all he can do, that he is uncomfortable with the pain I am having, and that my best bet is to see this guy.

So after being through all this, this is my advice: Don’t start panicking about numbness till after the first month (I am told it is common for the numbeness to fade right about then), go back to the oral surgeon if you feel any pain, and if you don’t regain feeling, ask him if there is anyone he can refer you to.

I’m with ivylass on this one. Freshman in college, had all three teeth pulled, went to class that evening. One stitch. No hu-hu. Learned that I am mightily fond of Valium, so that has been on my “Never take this under any circumstances” list ever since.

I didn’t have any problems. The closest I had to trouble was with the curved plastic syringe they’ll give you to flush out the pockets. I got many concerned looks when I used that in the school bathroom.

I got all 4 done in high school. Hurt like hell. The Tylenol with codeine helped so… MORE tylenol would help more, right? Don’t remember much else for a couple days.

yanked 4 out at once. 2 were partially impacted. Did it all with novacaine. Follow up was aspirin and popsicles.

I didn’t have money and I didn’t want anything beyond a local (previous addiction issue).

I remember the lower jaw ones hurt the most. Used something like a rachet wrench and kept cranking it over while trying to hold my jaw firm. The breaking teeth and pulling out the pieces were squicky.

I got all four done when I was a freshman or sophomore in high school. When they tell you not to eat anything but ice cream and pudding they mean it. I ate hot tomato soup, and dissolved my stiches, and they had to shove gauze into my raw holes.

And if that’s not sexy enough for you, when I came out from under the anethesia, the front closure of my bra was undone. (I think I’ve mentioned this on this board before, now that I think about it.) Only my subconcious will ever know what that was about.


All I remember is they gave me awesome drugs. I was playing my guitar, and watching the notes float up from the strings, with trails and everything. They only took two, so I still have two more in my mouth. Hopefully, if I have to get them extracted someday, they’ll give me more of those lovely, lovely pills.

I had one out the first time, along with a nearby abscessed tooth, and then six months later, I had the rest of them taken out. Both times, no pain, really, I slept through the entire thing, and spent the weekend in bed. (That stuff they give you is strong!)

In fact, the worst was having the IV put in. Yuck.

Dentist took out the uppers-no problem. He sent me to his oral surgeon buddy because the lowers were impacted. Local anesthesia-the doc said I was crazy-out of the office in 30 minutes.

I had mine out under local, the right side three weeks after the left side. The worst part, apart from the grinding, chipping, chiseling and other carpentry-like sounds, was reclining in the chair under the sterile drapes with only a small opening above my mouth. I’ve never thought of myself as a claustrophobic kind of person before having that procedure done.

I had to sleep in the spare room for six weeks because my husband is an arm waving kind of dreamer and I was drooling blood for days.

I was still swollen and bruised on my left side when I had to go back for the right side. I’m amazed I didn’t chicken out.

One of my nerves took over two years to get sensation back and the under side of my tongue still doesn’t have the same sensitivity as the other side, 25 years later.

Um…nothing gruesome here, though the anesthesia made me verrrry sick to my stomach. I vividly recall puking up my tomato soup dinner–out my nose.

Bleh–thinking about it, I can taste and feel that all over again. Ick.

I had my bottom ones out when aged 14, in aid of orthodontic work. I had to go to the hospital and was knocked right out. The worst part was waking up afterwards and being spectacularly sick, both in the hospital and all the way home in the car, bringing up blood all the way.

Im not reading this! Im not reading this! Aaaaaaaaaaaaaah! I will never go to a dentist ever again:

I have had two of my wisdom teeth pulled on one side. The dentist pulled and pulled, but couldnt get them out, so he tried a lot of things. I cant remeber all what he did, since all I really remember is a lot of pulling which felt like the dentist was trying to pull my whole skeleton out, a lot of needles, then some metal band thing which was thightened to my teeth without any luck, and in the end a “fire in the hole” and a loud bang (that was after 5 hours), blood squirting everywhere and teeth splinters sticking out from the wall. Im never going back to a dentist ever. Never! No matter how many times you say ni! to me. I would rather serve a lifetime with the Canadian kilted yaksmen than ever seing a dentist again!

When I came out from under the anethesia, the dentist was still pulling my

tooth out! :eek:

CMC fnord!

I suppose I could help. I’ve had all my wisdom teeth out over the course of three separate appointments with three separate dentists over the course of eight years.

The first one was bottom left. I was put under, everything went really easily, never picked up the meds or anything.

The second one was top right and this time I decided to be awake but numbed. Now, I hadn’t had the time to put two and two together, but I later left this dentist because his numbing could use some work. Long story short, he ended up having to give me seven shots to numb it enough that I couldn’t feel it. One time, he used his instruments to grab onto the tooth and it felt like my whole body was hit with electricity. I practically hit the ceiling it hurt so bad.

This last April 28th, I had the last two taken out while I was put under again (the last experience was enough for me, thanks). I remember getting the IV and having my head get hit with a feeling of dizziness and the next thing I remember is walking into my apartment with a mouth full of blood. I got dry socket on one of them, but it wasn’t a big deal, just a mild ache that eventually went away.

Oh, and this time resulted in a condition called Superficial thrombophlebitis. Basically, the vein that they used for the IV got blocked by a blood clot and bruised up a couple of days after the operation. In fact, it’s still bruised right now. I talked to my doctor about it and she said it wasn’t a big deal, it would go away eventually, and that this particular vein is done for so stay away from it for future IV’s.

Overall, some annoyances, but I’m not too sorry about it.