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Wisdom teeth claims

What are wisdom teeth?

Wisdom teeth, which are often referred to as third molars, are the last set of teeth that come through (erupt) – usually during the late teens or twenties.

Sometimes, there is insufficient space for the wisdom teeth to erupt into their normal position, forcing them to erupt at an angle (impacted) or only come through partially (partial eruption).

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Impacted wisdom teeth

An impacted wisdom tooth may cause no problems at all, in many cases however impaction can make effective oral hygiene around the area very difficult, leading to the build-up of food and bacteria. This can lead to several complications:

Wisdom tooth removal process

Generally, the more impacted the wisdom tooth is, the more complex the procedure to remove it is likely to be. An important nerve in the lower jaw can sometimes be very intimately related to the wisdom tooth which will make its removal riskier.

Before the procedure, your dentist should take an x-ray of the wisdom tooth to determine the level of risk – they may then decide to refer you to a specialist oral surgeon. In cases where there is a nerve lying in close relationship to the wisdom tooth, a coronectomy may be the preferred treatment option in order to eliminate the risk of injury to that nerve.

The removal of wisdom teeth is usually performed under local anaesthetic; an incision is made in the gum and the bone encasing the wisdom tooth is carefully removed. In some cases, the wisdom tooth is divided into smaller pieces and each piece is removed – in both cases, you are likely to need some stitches afterwards.

You may experience some discomfort and swelling for a few days after the procedure, and your dentist should advise you on measures that can be taken to alleviate any symptoms, and to help prevent an infection from developing.

Possible complications of wisdom tooth removal

Wisdom tooth removal complications can include:

Dry Socket

This common complication is an infection in the empty tooth socket, and is more likely to occur if the procedure was lengthy and/or difficult, if you smoke and in the absence of appropriate socket after-care.

Damage to the adjacent molar tooth

Sometimes, due to the fact that impacted wisdom teeth push on the other teeth, the adjacent teeth can get damaged – often leading to further complications.

Wisdom Tooth Nerve Damage

In some cases, removing a wisdom tooth can cause damage to the nerves that are positioned close to the roots of lower wisdom teeth. This can result in debilitating temporary or permanent numbness in the tongue, teeth, gums, lower lip and chin.

Careful planning and excellent technical skill by your dentist will reduce the risk of complications, however complications can occur – especially if you dentist has failed to take the due care expected.

If you feel that you have been a victim of dental negligence, contact a member of our team today for free initial legal advice.

What are the treatment options for impacted wisdom teeth?

Impacted teeth require no treatment if they are healthy and are causing no problems. In many cases, if the impacted wisdom tooth is only causing minor problems, simple measures can sometimes be the only required treatment. These include improved oral hygiene and the use of an antiseptic mouthwash. However, some impacted wisdom teeth will need removal – and this process is not without risk.

How long should pain last after wisdom teeth extraction?

Recovery time after a wisdom tooth extraction will be different for everyone, and if blood clots become dislodged from the wound, or the wound becomes infected, recovery may take longer. However, in most cases the healing process can be broken down into the following stages:

  • First 24 hours: Blood clots will form
  • 2 to 3 days: Swelling of the mouth and cheeks should improve
  • 7 days: A dentist can remove any stitches that remain
  • 7 to 10 days: Jaw stiffness and soreness should go away
  • 2 weeks: Any mild bruising on the face should heal

What are the symptoms of a wisdom tooth extraction gone wrong?

Usually, wisdom tooth extractions go to plan – but treatment can go wrong, and wisdom tooth extractions, performed negligently, have been known to cause:

  • Sinus perforation
  • Infection
  • Nerve damage
  • Jaw fractures
  • Uncontrolled bleeding
  • Temporomandibular joint injury

If you feel that you have suffered from dental negligence while having a wisdom tooth removed, contact a member of our team today for free initial legal advice.

How much compensation could I get for a wisdom tooth dental negligence claim?

As with most dental negligence claims, the amount of compensation that you may receive if you have suffered after having your wisdom teeth removed will depend on the circumstances of your specific case.

At the Dental Law Partnership, our team of expert dental negligence solicitors are on hand to help you with your wisdom tooth compensation claim at every step of the way; contact us today.

How much does it cost to make a wisdom tooth dental compensation claim?

At the Dental Law Partnership, our cases are usually funded by a no win, no fee agreement. This means that even if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not pay any legal costs. Call us today on 0808 278 8202 for an initial, no obligation chat about your claim.

How long do wisdom tooth dental negligence claims take?

Unfortunately, it is difficult to put an exact time-frame on a wisdom tooth dental negligence compensation claim, as it can vary quite dramatically from case to case. There is a strict legal process that must be adhered to and many cases are settled before they reach court, meaning that a claim could take anywhere from a few weeks to several months, depending on how your dentist responds to the claim and other aspects of the legal process, such as evidence gathering and gaining expert opinions. Click here for full details of the dental negligence claims process.

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