Tooth extraction is the process of removing a natural tooth if it has decayed to the point where it cannot be saved or if there is not enough room in the mouth for a tooth to erupt. Dentists do not usually recommend extracting natural teeth, but it is necessary when it comes to saving the…
Tips for Healing After a Wisdom Tooth Extraction
Having a wisdom tooth extraction can be invasive surgery. It is often necessary to make room for the other teeth in the mouth. Some patients struggle to recover after this procedure. If you follow your dentist’s instructions, you should regain your strength. You can be back at your normal tasks soon.
Key points to know about wisdom tooth extraction
It is common for people to need wisdom tooth extraction at some point in life. The wisdom teeth are the third set of molars that usually come in during a person’s late teens or early 20s. Not everyone will have four of these teeth, but the teeth often come in at odd angles or affecting the position of existing teeth. The surgery is more involved and challenging when the teeth have not yet emerged, though some people’s teeth have already come in when they have the procedure.
Avoid strenuous activities
Because wisdom tooth extraction usually involves the use of general anesthesia, the patient should not do anything overly physical after the procedure. A caregiver or other trusted individual should pick up the patient and drive them home. Once there, the recovering patient should rest and relax, with the head elevated. The individual should not go to work immediately after the surgery and should plan to take things easy for the next 48 hours.
Take medication as prescribed
Wisdom tooth extraction can leave the patient feeling sore. There will be some pain at the surgical site, so the dentist will prescribe drugs to help the patient feel more comfortable. The recovering individual should take the medication as directed. Over-the-counter medication can also help, especially once the patient has taken all of the prescriptions.
Use an ice pack
The recovering patient should keep an ice pack on the mouth for 20 minutes at a time several times a day for the first days after the surgery. After the wisdom tooth extraction, the patient will have some swelling in the mouth, so the cold compression will help relieve this in time. If there is still swelling a week after the surgery, the individual should contact the dentist.
Eating and drinking
For the first week or so after surgery, the patient should not eat anything crunchy, chewy, or hot. For the first 48 hours, the individual should not drink with a straw. Right after wisdom tooth extraction, it is wise to stick to foods such as mashed potatoes, yogurt, bananas, and mild soup. Also, the patient should swish their mouth with salt water but should avoid brushing in the surgical area for five to seven days.
Follow directions to feel well again
A wisdom tooth extraction can be rough for some people. If you are concerned about your recovery, make sure you follow these guidelines. When in doubt, call the dentist to get more information. You will soon be back on your feet enjoying the benefits of this procedure. If you think it is time to remove your wisdom teeth, consult your dentist.
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