We learned a few weeks ago that crowded wisdom teeth are the most common root cause of pericoronitis because of their slow and inhibited, often incomplete, emergence. Since a lifetime of prevention is really the only “cure” for crowded teeth, we’re left to manage the consequences of malnourishment. Pericoronitis is just one painful, unfortunate result of the wisdom teeth not having enough room to come in properly.
Many, if not most, people have their wisdom teeth removed either out of necessity or recommendation by their dentists. A good number of people keep those teeth, however, for one reason or another. A few have wisdom teeth that come in normally and healthily. Regardless of where you stand, an oral irrigator is an indispensable tool for prevention and early treatment should your wisdom teeth become susceptible to an infection like pericoronitis.
An irrigator is an excellent appliance to keep by your bathroom sink. We can show you how to use it if you don’t have any experience with one. Oral irrigation is one of the best things you can do for your gums, whether it’s around your wisdom teeth or the rest of them. The clean feeling they leave behind is unbelievable. Particular to pericoronitis, though, it is one of the easiest ways to keep the large gum pockets around the wisdom teeth free of food particles, making it an inhospitable environment for infection.
Even if an infection does set in, an irrigator is good for keeping the area clean and hopefully speeding up the process. Of the two scenarios you want to be in, prevention is by far better; irrigating the area affected by pericoronitis will help, but will be incredibly painful.
What are some other ways of coping with a pericoronitis infection?
In my office, we can help with some ozone treatment or laser therapy. This is probably the most effective treatment.
At-home remedies include rinsing or irrigating with a solution of warm water and baking soda. This can be very soothing, but must be done frequently because the effect is temporary. It is helpful for keeping your mouth clean, however. Adding hydrogen peroxide to your oral irrigator is also a good idea.
Diluting top-quality clove bud essential oil in a carrier oil (like coconut oil, which is also healing to gum tissue) and applying it to the area can help. Start with a 1:30 ratio of clove bud oil to carrier oil and work your way up until you feel the numbing effect. You might receive compliments for smelling like pumpkin pie.
You are a trooper if you make it through a bout of pericoronitis without pharmaceutical assistance. Pericoronitis can develop into something more serious, so don’t completely mask the symptoms with painkillers. As I’ve said before, while you’re treating it, consuming only nourishing, well-cooked soft or liquid foods will ease the chewing burden on your teeth and will help your immune system fight the infection.