Often, wisdom teeth require extraction to avoid infection, treat an infection or avoid the teeth from causing disruption with the alignment and comfort of other teeth. Regardless of the reason your oral surgeon is recommending removing your wisdom teeth, it’s smart to read up on aftercare for the best results.
The procedure is very straightforward and routine. You should not be worried about the procedure as most people heal naturally within a few days. But by following aftercare tips, you can heal completely, with minimal discomfort.
Dos and Don’ts for Wisdom Teeth Extraction Aftercare
After your wisdom teeth extraction, follow these dos and don’ts to keep the site clean, optimize comfort and heal.
Plan to take the day of surgery and at least the day after off school and work. You don’t have to spend all day in bed, but you should try to relax and avoid raising your heart rate very high because that can induce more bleeding.
Do: Keep Your Head Elevated
Elevating a part of your body can help reduce swelling, which will keep you more comfortable and speed healing.
Do: Ice the Area
Throughout the first 24-48 hours, you should apply ice to your cheeks for 15 minutes every hour. On the second day, you could ice for 15 minutes every two hours if you’d prefer.
Do: Use Gauze
Your oral surgeon will provide you with gauze to place in the back of your mouth near the extraction site. Biting down on the gauze gently after the procedure will help slow the bleeding quickly. You can change out the gauze when it is saturated to keep you comfortable.
Do: Keep the Area Clean
Gargle with salt water once a day or a mouthwash as prescribed by your surgeon. You’ll also start using a syringe to clean the area from food debris a few days after surgery.
Do: Eat Soft Foods
Don’t plan to enjoy a filet the evening after extraction. Plan to eat soft foods for a few days to ensure you don’t disrupt your stitches or cause damage to the empty sockets.
Do: Brush Your Teeth Gently
You won’t brush the first day after surgery just to make sure you don’t disrupt the healing process. But after that, be sure to be very gentle when you brush your teeth and avoid the extraction area.
Don’t: Suck Using a Straw
Although smoothies and milkshakes will be appetizing and easy to enjoy in the days after extraction, you don’t want to drink them through a straw. This disrupts the blood clotting process and if the clot gets dislodged, you’ll start bleeding again and might experience more pain.
Don’t: Take Aspirin for Pain Relief
Aspirin is a blood thinner, which will disrupt the clotting process. That means you’ll bleed longer than necessary. Instead, it’s a good idea to use ibuprofen, which will relieve pain while reducing swelling.
Don’t: Poke or Aggravate the Area
You might be curious about what the empty socket looks like after your procedure. It’s best to leave it alone to heal instead of poking it, feeling the area with your tongue or inserting things into your mouth to see or feel it. Disrupting the healing can lead to a dry socket, which is painful and will require longer to heal.
Don’t: Get Aggressive When Mouth Washing
When mouthwash is the primary means of cleaning your teeth, some patients believe that means they should go all out with the process. But you still want to swish very gently in the first few days after extraction. That way, you don’t dislodge the blood clot, which causes discomfort and delays healing.
Wisdom Teeth Extraction in Middle Tennessee
If you’re seeking safe, accommodating wisdom teeth extraction in middle Tennessee, visit Coyne Oral Surgery in Franklin, Tennessee. Make an appointment online or call 615-771-0017.