5 Do’s & Do Not’s After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

wisdom-tooth-pain-ice-pack

Extracting one or more wisdom teeth is a common procedure that is often necessary for optimal oral health. It can be painful and even detrimental for these teeth to remain in your mouth. They can cause infections, complications with your jaw, and start to crowd other teeth. In fact, most people don’t have enough room in their mouths to accommodate all four additional molars.

If you’ve had a consultation with a dentist or oral surgeon and have been told that it’s time for a wisdom teeth extraction, there are some essential do’s and do not’s to consider.

If it’s time to have your wisdom teeth removed, Absolute Dental is ready to help. Contact us to learn about our extraction services.

5 Do’s – Wisdom Teeth Recovery Tips

dentist-talking-to-patient

Now that you’ve had a wisdom tooth extraction performed, it’s time to focus on your recovery. You want to make sure that the area heals properly while preventing any potential infection that could occur. Here are our five recovery tips after having your wisdom teeth removed.

1.Keep Your Head Slightly Elevated

Do your best to elevate your head while resting for at least a few days after the procedure. This position will help to reduce swelling near the surgical site. Also, it prevents the blood vessels volume from increasing, which can cause throbbing and increased discomfort. Adding an extra pillow under your head could help with pain and swelling and speed up your recovery.

2.Apply a Cold Compress

Dentists will often recommend applying an ice pack or cold compress to the surface of your face where the tooth was extracted to reduce inflammation and bruising and address pain. Try using the ice pack for 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off for optimal relief. If you’re using a bag of ice, be sure to wrap it in a clean towel or cloth to prevent damaging your skin.

3.Stick to the Recommended Post-Procedure Diet

When it’s time to eat, you’ll need to stick to very soft foods or liquids, including:

  • Warm broth or soup
  • Blended smoothies
  • Applesauce
  • Yogurt
  • Soft fruits
  • Oatmeal
  • Ice cream

Chewing on hard foods right away can lead to excessive bleeding, infection, and a lot of pain. You’ll need to heal a bit before getting back to those harder and more solid choices. Your dentist or oral surgeon will let you know when it’s safe to return to your regular diet.

4.Use Jaw Massages and Exercises

Your jaw may feel quite sore and stiff for the next few days. You can utilize jaw exercises to keep everything moving and healing the right way. Your dental care team will likely send you home with this information, so you have it on hand.

You can work the jaw area by gently opening and closing your mouth every so often. Also, using your fingers to gently massage the jaw muscles will help with stiffness and release built-up tension.

5.Follow All Directions from Your Dentist

It’s vital that you follow the schedule you’ve been given for your pain medications, antibiotics, and other recommended recovery instructions from your dentist. By skipping these important steps, you could be putting yourself at risk for infection, increased pain, and other complications.

Stay on top of your oral health with Absolute Dental! Schedule an appointment today.

5 Do Not’s – What to Avoid During Recovery

woman-drinking-from-a-straw

While there are several things you should remember to do after a wisdom tooth removal procedure, there are also things you need to avoid. Here are the top 5 things not to do after a dental extraction.

1.Avoid Brushing Too Soon

According to Mayo Clinic1, you should wait to brush your teeth or use mouthwash for the first 24 hours after surgery. You can start brushing the next day, but use caution and stay away from your extraction site until you’re sure the area has healed. Also, follow your dentist’s recommendations on how to keep your mouth clean during this time of your recovery.

2.Do Not Use a Straw

During the healing process, a blood clot will form over the site of your extraction, and you need to keep that clot in place to promote healing. Using a straw creates suction and pressure that could dislodge the clot and cause you to start bleeding again. It could even lead to a condition called dry socket. A healing wisdom tooth socket should be left alone as much as possible.

3.Do Not Eat Hard Foods

Never eat hard or sharp foods right after a wisdom tooth extraction. This includes:

  • Popcorn
  • Potato chips
  • Corn chips
  • Pretzels
  • Nuts

Not only could these foods disturb the extraction site and cause bleeding, but they can also hurt your jaw, which is still stiff from the procedure.

4.Pause Smoking and Tobacco Use

If you’re a smoker, you’ll need to stop smoking for at least 72 hours after your wisdom tooth extraction. Your dentist may even recommend that you pause your smoking habits for longer than that to allow your mouth to recover and lower the risk of complications. If you chew tobacco, let your dentist know and follow their instructions on how long to stay away from this habit.

5.Don’t Hesitate to Speak Up

Don’t be afraid to talk to your dentist about any issues or concerns you have regarding your wisdom extraction recovery. If you feel like something is not right or your pain levels are not getting better, contact your dentist or oral surgeon. It’s better to catch complications early to avoid more extensive treatments down the road.

Our dentists provide high-quality dental services that are accessible and affordable. Contact us today to make an appointment.

Are There Wisdom Teeth Removal Services Near Me?

Dentist looking at wisdom teeth

The dentists and oral surgeons at Absolute Dental are experts at wisdom tooth extraction.  We use the least invasive techniques and a variety of sedation options to reduce your wisdom tooth pain while still allowing for fast recovery when healing after the procedure. If you suspect you may need to remove your wisdom teeth, contact our team to schedule a consultation.

Sources:

1Mayo Clinic. (31 January 2018). Wisdom tooth extraction. Retrieved 25 April 2022.

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Absolute Dental

Absolute Dental started in the Las Vegas valley with a single office and has been providing industry-leading dental care to our communities ever since.

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