The wisdom teeth grow at the back of your gums and are the last teeth to come through. Most people have 4 wisdom teeth (1 in each corner).
Although far less common than dry socket, injury to sections of a nerve called the trigeminal nerve is another possible complication of wisdom tooth removal. It can cause pain, a tingling sensation and numbness in your tongue, lower lip, chin, teeth and gums.
The damage is usually temporary, lasting for a few weeks or months. However, it can be permanent if the nerve has been severely damaged.
A nerve injury can interfere with your daily activities, making things such as eating and drinking difficult. However, a nerve injury will only cause sensation problems – it won’t cause any weakness to your lip or tongue.
Your dentist or surgeon will try to minimize the possibility of nerve damage when removing your wisdom tooth, and they should tell you about the risk of complications before the procedure.
General anaesthetic is occasionally needed for the removal of wisdom teeth.
It carries some additional risks, but complications are very rare, occurring in less than 1 in every 10,000 cases.
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