October 04, 2021
You may be wondering what you can expect after having a wisdom tooth extracted. Will it hurt? How long will the recovery period last? What should I do to prepare for the surgery and what should I bring with me when we arrive at our appointment? This article is designed to answer these questions and more. If you're considering getting your wisdom teeth removed, give this post a read!
You may have a sore throat
This can be a hard one! You may have some swelling and discomfort for several days to weeks following your wisdom tooth extraction, but you'll also likely find that it's easier to eat solid foods right away without all of those teeth getting in the way! It is recommended that you practice good oral hygiene by brushing twice daily with an antibacterial mouthwash.
You'll also want to continue using pain medications and antibiotics as directed by your dentist or doctor, and avoid smoking for at least a couple of weeks after the surgery since this can lead to delays in healing.
If you're experiencing severe discomfort that is preventing you from eating at all, speak with your oral surgeon immediately because they may prescribe stronger medication like ibuprofen (Advil) which will ease the pain more quickly than regular Tylenol (acetaminophen). If there's still no relief after taking anti-inflammatory drugs, it might be time to investigate other sources such as toothache remedies.
You will be able to eat soft foods for the first few days
Your oral surgeon will remove several of your teeth and may place stitches or surgical staples in the area, which you'll need to leave intact for a few days (or weeks) until they are fully healed. You can eat what's called "soft" foods during this period but it is important that these soft foods do not require chewing with any forceful pressure since this might dislodge the sutures/staples in your mouth.
You should plan on eating soft food items like smoothies, yogurt, soup broth, or mashed potatoes for at least two weeks after surgery when all of the stitches/staples have been removed from your gums. Most people find that their appetite returns within about three to five days following the extraction so don't be surprised if you start to feel hungry again!
Your jaw may hurt from where the tooth was removed
It's common to experience some pain and discomfort in the area where your wisdom tooth was removed, but this usually goes away within a few days. You might notice that you have difficulty opening or closing your mouth for a week or two while it heals from surgery, which results in sore jaw muscles until movement is restored. If you're experiencing severe pain when chewing on one side of your mouth after having a back molar extracted, try using only the opposite side (the front teeth) during mealtimes until things heal up nicely again.
Take ibuprofen or acetaminophen if you need it
If you're dealing with any post-op discomfort, the best thing to do is take ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). Ibuprofen can help reduce inflammation and swelling that might be causing your pain. If you are taking too much Advil for an extended period of time it may cause stomach ulcers so try alternating between Tylenol and Advil every few hours if needed.
Some people experience significant amounts of pain after wisdom tooth removal surgery but avoiding certain foods during recovery like hard crusts on bread products or solid vegetables/fruits which require more chewing than soft items like smoothies.
The swelling and pain should go away within a week, but it's normal to feel some discomfort until then
If you have any questions about how to feel during the healing process, speak with your doctor before taking over-the-counter medications to reduce swelling and discomfort since these can interact poorly with other drugs that you may be taking in order to manage postoperative pain or anxiety.
It's not uncommon for people who've recently had their teeth removed from impacted wisdom teeth to experience some amount of mild bleeding when they brush/rinse their mouths out in the morning because there are no longer any obstructions like back molars which prevent blood from reaching areas where it would normally collect near gum tissues. Luckily this problem goes away fairly quickly as your gums start to heal.
You should plan on avoiding any kind of strenuous activity for the first five days after wisdom tooth removal surgery, which means you need to consider how your plans might be affected if this is something that's needed before or after work/school since there are limitations involved with taking pain medication and being able to function normally during activities like driving or biking.
Don't chew on that side of your mouth while you heal
Chewing can create more pressure in your mouth and make things worse if the stitches/staples are still present. You should plan on continuing to eat soft foods for at least two weeks after surgery since it can take that long before your jaw feels like itself again and you're ready to chew normally again.
If you chew on the opposite (right) side of your mouth, you may notice that there is more saliva present than usual since your salivary glands are no longer on the same side as they were before surgery.
This should subside within a week or two after wisdom tooth removal and it doesn't mean that anything's wrong if this persists beyond then, but it might be something to mention to your dentist/doctor in case he can offer advice about how to deal with any unusual dryness related to reduced saliva production during mealtimes.
When all of the stitches/staples have been removed from your gums at around two weeks post-surgery most people start feeling hungry again so don't be surprised if you yourself eating less often until things have healed up.
It can be a little overwhelming to figure out what you should expect after wisdom tooth extraction, but we're here to help. Wisdom teeth are the last set of molars that come in and may need removal if they don't grow into other teeth or become impacted by them. We hope this post has helped clear up some of the confusion surrounding wisdom teeth removal!