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The removal of a wisdom tooth, also called a third molar, is a particularly common minor surgical procedure that a lot of the people go through. The reason why these teeth have to be removed can vary from the teeth being improperly aligned to decay having set in or to even to prevent orthodontic treatment from relapsing as the teeth erupt.

Unnecessary Teeth

Dentists do not try and save these teeth beyond reason or even try and replace them once they have been extracted, because we no longer need these teeth. They are an evolutionary remnant in our bodies like the appendix.

As our dietary habits have evolved over time, our jaws have become smaller and less powerful. Consequently, third molars do not have the necessary space to erupt in the correct orientation. They do not play any role in our everyday chewing.

This is why a large percentage of third molars is improperly erupted or stuck inside the bone, necessitating a minor oral surgical procedure to extract them.

Wisdom Tooth Removal

This procedure commonly involves the removal of some part of the bone and overlying mucosal tissue to provide adequate access to the tooth.

After removal, the tissues are stitched back up so that the healing can be quick and uneventful.

Now, this almost always results in some amount of swelling in the area of the mouth where the extraction has been done and this can be seen inside the mouth as well as outside the mouth by casual observers.


During this post-operative period, patients sometimes complain of a feeling of tightness, or even feeling as if their cheeks have been stitched to the gums. This is because the initial incision line is along the junction of the cheek and the gums.

The stitches along this line may prevent you from feeling full mobility when you open your mouth to talk or even eat.

The thing to realize here is that this feeling will almost always pass with time. The healing of the soft tissues which have been stitched take around a week to ten days on average to heal completely.

However it can take longer depending upon the difficulty of extraction as well as other systemic factors that are too many to list here.

The flap of tissue which has been elevated to provide access to the underlying bone and tooth may have to be released a little more so that complete coverage of the extraction site can take place. This can also provide that feeling of tightness in the mouth.

The removal of a third molar is a minor oral surgical procedure that a large amount of population goes through. All of these people will have different experiences and things to take away from the entire ordeal, however, it is important to remember that 99.99% of the people will heal without any trouble in the long run.

All these things and minor discomforts will come to pass. It just requires time and patience from the patient's side.

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