Wisdom teeth removal is not exactly a pleasant prospect, but if your dentist recommends it, you can rest assured there’s a good reason. Having your wisdom teeth removed is often required to relieve overcrowding, remove cavities, and treat infection or disease.
The family dentists at Greeley Dental Health in Greeley, Colorado, encourage you not to worry if you’re scheduled for wisdom teeth removal. With the proper care, you can avoid unnecessary pain and discomfort after your procedure. Heal faster by following these seven simple tips.
1. Prepare Yourself
Your family dentist or oral surgeon can prepare you for what to expect after your surgery. Make sure to schedule your procedure when you can take three to four days off of work to recover. If you live alone, ask a friend or family member to stay with you the night immediately following your surgery.
2. Quit Smoking
It’s best if you can quit smoking for good, but you need to not smoke during your recovery. Smoking is bad for your oral health, and that becomes especially important when you’re healing from a tooth extraction. Smoking increases your risk of infection and slows healing. In addition, puffing on a cigarette creates suction in your mouth that can disturb the extraction sites, increasing your risk of complications.
3. Get Plenty of Rest
Sleep enables the body’s natural healing processes, so try to get plenty of rest following your wisdom teeth removal. Keep your head elevated by pillows and relax. Avoid strenuous movements for at least one to two days.
4. Be Careful What You Eat
Avoid hard or solid foods for at least a few days after your surgery. Stick to liquids and soft foods—such as mashed potatoes and soup—and stay away from spicy or hot dishes. Also, don’t use a straw when you drink. Like smoking, this creates suction in the mouth that can disturb the extraction sites.
5. Ice the Area
Apply ice to your cheek closest to the extraction sites. This will help cut down on swelling, discomfort, and bleeding. Putting ice in your mouth can also help, but don’t suck on it, because this can disturb the extraction sites.
6. Practice Opening Your Mouth
The first time you open your mouth after your wisdom teeth removal, open it gently. Stiffness is normal, but it shouldn’t keep you from expanding your jaw like normal. Failure to test your range of motion may result in prolonged tension. If your muscles are sore, you can gently massage them.
7. Don’t Panic If You Bleed
Bleeding after oral surgery is to be expected. Use gauze pads or tea bags on the wounds to reduce the bleeding. Bite down gently and switch them out with clean ones every so often.
To prevent complications after your wisdom teeth removal, listen to the advice of your family dentist or oral surgeon. Also, let us know if discomfort or bleeding persists for more than five days or increases. In Greeley, you can call Greeley Dental Health at (970) 353-4329 to schedule an appointment.