Wisdom Teeth Removal – What’s Next?
POSTED BY: Manpreet Mangat
When healthy and properly aligned, these molars can be a valuable asset to the mouth. However, more often, they are misaligned and require removal. The development of wisdom teeth comes with a whole series of complications. The most common complication is the misalignment of the teeth which can cause crowding and can even cause damage to the adjacent teeth, jaw bone, or nerves.
Wisdom teeth pain can be constant for some people, while other people only experience pain and discomfort when chewing food or touching the area. It is advised for wisdom teeth to be removed before wisdom teeth pain becomes an issue. In some cases, you may not experience any pain at all – however, you still may have an infection. This is why it is important to visit your Dentist for regular checkups.
You just had your wisdom teeth removed…now what?
Well, after the extraction of wisdom teeth, there are several things you should refrain from doing:
- Do not disturb the wound.
It is important to avoid irritating the area. Please ensure you chew on the opposite side for 24 hours and keep anything sharp from entering the wound (such as utensils, etc.)
- Do not smoke for 24 hours.
Smoking will promote bleeding and interfere with healing.
- Avoid brushing.
Do not brush for the first 8 hours after surgery. After this time period, you may gently brush your teeth, avoiding the area that was treated.
- Avoid mouth wash.
Avoid all rinsing for 24 hours after the extraction. This is to ensure the formation of a healing blood clot which is essential to proper wound healing. Disturbance of this clot can lead to increased bleeding or the loss of the blood clot. If the clot is lost, a painful condition called dry socket may occur. You may use warm salt water or mild antiseptic rinses after 24 hours (only if prescribed).
- Do not spit or suck through a straw.
This will promote bleeding and may dislodge the blood clot causing a dry socket.
When you leave the office, you will be given oral instructions regarding the control of postoperative bleeding. A rolled up gauze pad will be placed on the extraction site and you will be asked to change this dressing every 20 minutes or so depending on the amount of bleeding that is occurring. It is normal for some blood to ooze from the area of surgery. We will also give you a package of gauze to take with you to use at home if the bleeding continues. If you need to use the gauze at home, remember to roll it into a ball large enough to cover the wound. Hold firmly in place, by biting or with finger pressure for about 20-30 minutes. If bleeding still continues, you may fold a tea bag in half and bite down on it. Tea contains Tannic Acid, a styptic, which may help reduce the bleeding.
Some discomfort is normal after the surgery. Analgesic tablets (such as Tylenol, Aspirin) may be taken under your dentist’s direction. Prescription medication, if prescribed by dentist, should also be taken as directed. If pain continues, call your Dentist.
To prevent swelling, apply an ice pack or a cold towel to the outside of your face in the area of the extraction during the first 12 hours. Apply alternately, 20 minutes on then 20 minutes off, for an hour or longer is necessary.
Eat normal regular meals as soon as you are able after surgery. Cold, soft food such as ice cream or yogurt may be the most comfortable for the first day. It is also important to drink plenty of fluids.
The recovery time for this surgery can take anywhere from 3 to 4 days. In some cases, it may take up to a week or more. Keeping your mouth during this time is important – do this simply with salt water. Applying an ice pack over your jaw will help reduce discomfort and inflammation.
If you are experiencing unusual symptoms such as severe pain, pus discharge, fever, please call your Dentist or Oral Surgeon straight away. Infections are rare following the procedure, but still may be possible.
Still have some concerns? Feel free to ask our staff at Braydon Dental Care any questions or concerns you may have regarding your Wisdom Teeth!