Wisdom teeth

Every time my wisdom teeth have a growth spurt, I get cough, fuzzy in the head etc. Is it normal? Is it due to infection, or just the discomfort of the teeth growing? I know it sounds like a dumb question, but I can’t think of how to better rephrase it…

Growth spurts?

How old are you? Wisdom teeth are usually fully grown by age 18; certainly by age 25.

I had my wisdom teeth growing and then pulled a long time ago, but I remember them making me feel pretty awful every time they came up. You know how babies get all cranky when they’re teething? I guess you don’t stop feeling crappy when you’re teething wisdom teeth, either.

Impacted wisdom teeth can cause problems with your ears (which is how I discovered mine were trying to come in; extreme ear pain with no indication of an infection) which could be the cause of your ‘fuzzy head’.

I’m 30. One is fully grown, another is 2/3 grown, another is just cutting the gumnow (I suspect it’s the one causing the trouble), and the other one’s ready to grow, but hasn’t cut the gum yet.

Oh yes, crankiness is still a problem!

If it’s just the top and it sort of feels like you got punched in the face it might not be your wisdom teeth but rather sinusitis or a sinus infection. I’ve had problems with both and can tell you it’s very hard to tell the difference between pain in your maxillary sinuses and pain from your upper wisdom teeth.

Um…get them pulled? You don’t need them, obviously.

Isn’t getting them pulled when an adult more painful/dangerous? And long a week to recover? I can’t take time off work whenever I like…

Depends on lots of things. I got one of mine pulled a few months back. I’m 31. It was partially erupted. I went back to work afterwords for a few hours and other then eating on the other side for a few days I was good to go by the next day. OTOH, if you have four impacted teeth and get them all done at the same time, it’s a different story.
But you need to talk to a dentist or ENT and get some imaging done first (probably a CAT scan of your sinuses and a panoramic X-Ray of your teeth) to see what’s going on. To me, IMHO, it still sounds like a sinus infection. When I get sinus infections my sinuses push down on my top wisdom teeth and it causes pain in my jaw in addition to other sinus infection issues.

Pulling teeth affects each person differently.

When I was nineteen, I had two upper wisdom teeth pulled under local anesthetic (Novocaine). I drove myself home from the dentist. I was at work the next day. The swelling and bruising made me the target for a lot of teasing.

IMHO, a root canal is MUCH more painful and for a longer period of time than a tooth extraction.

Hmm, I had a root canal done and I drove home, was at work the next day etc.

It was certainly uncomfortable but I don’t remember having much pain. I’ve not had my wisdom teeth removed (they occasionally have a growth spurt but I’ve not needed to have them pulled, yet) so can’t compare the two, but I ain’t no He-Man and if it hurts I’ll say so.

I had all four of mine plus one other tooth extracted at the same time (I was completely out and it was done by an oral surgeon) and I didn’t experience any post-surgery pain. I was back at work within a couple of days. So it is possible you won’t have to take much if any time off work.

Ah, Justin, lucky you.

I’ve had many root canals. Some were no biggie. Others felt like I was being electrocuted through my jaw. And the present-day root canal where the entire she-bang is done in one sitting is a particularly righteous form of torture.

If you’ve got an abscess, count on even MORE fun.

Whereas, pulling a tooth–it’s GONE. Aside from the swelling and the bruising, the first focus is to control bleeding. Once the healing has started, then you need to keep the crater cleaned out.

I had all 4 of my wisdom teeth pulled in my mid-twenties. The top 2 had erupted and pointed east and west, and the bottom 2 were facing straight forward in my jaw, mashing all my lower teeth together. It was done in the dentist’s office under general anesthetic. My jaw ached a little for a day or 2 and I think I missed a day of work, but it was really not a big deal.

Went to the doctor yesterday. Turns out I had a sinus/throat infection, and the wisdom tooth growth was incidental. **Joey P ** gets a sticker!

I just had one of my wisdom teeth pulled (I’m 36) and had a root canal done a few years back. The root canal was nothing. Absolutely no pain. One round of local anesthetic and I was good to go. Was up and at 'em and ready to face the world as I left the endodontist’s office. The wisdom tooth extraction, on the other hand, was another story. It took an hour, four to five rounds of injections, and the left side of my face blew up like a balloon for two days. I couldn’t eat anything solid for almost 72 hours after the surgery. I’m almost two weeks into my recovery and there is still a slight lump in my jaw. The positive side of this is that the pain afterwards actually wasn’t so bad. Maybe it was the Vicodin, but it wasn’t so much the soreness, but the inability to talk clearly and chew anything more than mashed potatoes that really had me down. Plus my entire body felt like it was in “recovery mode” (like the lethargy that accompanies illness), so I gave myself nearly 48 hours to just take it easy and lay about watching tv.

The only reason I had this tooth pulled was because it encroached on my molar, which had a crown on it (the molar that had the root canal), and the crown popped off. My dentist strongly encouraged me to get the wisdom tooth pulled, as there was almost no room to work with to put the crown back in. She had shown me xrays from my first visit there (about four months ago–this is a new dentist), and the movement of the wisdom tooth was evident even in that short space of time. She didn’t pressure me into a decision, but I figured she knew best, so off to the oral surgeon it was for me. At 36, wisdom tooth removal was no fun for me, but individual experiences vary wildly.

I had the opposite experience;

I’ve had all four wisdom teeth extracted, and that was an adventure. Full anesthesia, though I still was aware of the the dentist putting his foot on the chair for greater leverage and the pop-pop-pop of every one getting pulled out. No pain from the immediate procedure, but it was like a week of healing before I could eat normally again.

On the other hand,

I’ve had a root canal procedure. This one was done only with local anesthetic. This procedure definitely produced more of an “ick” response. It didn’t hurt at all, but seeing the dentist brandish a a drill that seemed to be at least three inches long, then to have him sink it all the way, through the center of my tooth, into the jaw, was gross. Didn’t hurt on the procedure or the healing. But having a drill bit go that deep into me was…unsettling.

I’ve had two and a half root canals, and only after the first one did they even give me anything strong for pain.

I did have my wisdom teeth out at age 22 - all 4 at once. I opted for IV sedation, which was a wise (hah) choice on my part, so I couldn’t drive myself home. They gave me Percocet, which I think was a good idea, though I took the last of them on Sunday (the procedure was on Friday).

I tried to go into work the next day (Monday) but sat there staring at the computer, vaguely thinking that yeah, I was supposed to use it somehow… so I went home. I think that was a lingering side effect of the Percocet however. I didn’t have any major bruising, IIRC - good surgeon.

The OP’s problem: While it does indeed sound more to me (IANAD!!) like sinuses (which CAN cause referred pain in the teeth), I could imagine that somehow the tooth emerging might be setting up some localized infection / inflammation that could cause you to feel ill, and also increase salivation / nasal secretions that would trigger a worsening cough. I know that when mine were acting up, I’d have days where it was painful enough to take aspirin all day, and others where it didn’t bother me at all; the dentist said the pain was because the tissue would get infected / inflamed.

Oh - and I opted for IV anesthesia because a) I’ve had trouble getting numb, and b) the oral surgeon said “you won’t feel pain, but you will hear cracking” which was enough to me to suggest that maybe I shouldn’t be there when it happened (plus I had my doubts about “won’t feel pain” given prior history).

The root canal: I rather foolishly did my first one under local only. Well, when they had to peel me off the ceiling after the FIRST SHOT OF NOVOCAINE, they gave me an oral sedative but that didn’t kick in until after the procedure was done. It was horrible. Multiple shots of novocaine, including some directly into the tooth, did far too little. I can imagine that an extraction would be less painful, actually, even just under local - they’re not, after all, messing with the nerve inside the tooth at that point.

Subsequent root canals have been done with plenty of oral sedation on board BEFOREHAND, plus nitrous oxide during. As I told the endodontist (a different one, obviously!!) “you do NOT want me conscious. Trust me. This will make it easier for BOTH of us”.