Your back molars, also known as your wisdom teeth, are the last adult teeth to grow into your mouth. Typically, most people don’t have enough room in their jaws to accommodate more teeth without causing issues to their dental health. To prevent this problem, your dentist will recommend oral surgery to remove them.
By following our recommendations, most patients typically recover from their wisdom teeth surgery in three to four days. Read on to learn how you can ensure the best recovery process possible:
About Wisdom Teeth Removal Surgery
The operation is pretty routine, and shouldn’t take longer than 45 minutes to an hour. During the procedure, your dental surgeon will extract your wisdom teeth by either pulling them out or making small incisions into your gums or bone. You’ll often leave with some dissolvable stitches that will disappear in a few days, and some gauze to control any residual bleeding.
With more available appointments, no school to worry about, and the ability to enjoying some sun as you recover makes summertime the perfect time for your removal. After all, you’ll want the time to recover properly and avoid infections, control your pain, and heal at home without having to worry about school.
The Recovery Process
You should make a full recovery from your wisdom teeth removal in a little less than a week. However, if your teeth were impacted (wisdom teeth that come in on an angle), it could take a full week or more to recover. Be sure to give yourself enough time off from work or social obligations to heal fully.
Usually, you can plan to resume your daily activities the day after your surgery as long as you’re feeling up to it. You should, however, avoid any activity that may dislodge your stitches or causes the blood to clot over your wound. Its best to avoid these activities for a week following your surgery:
- Drinking from a straw
- Strenuous exercise
After the third day, your symptoms should significantly improve, and pain should subside after a week from your surgery date.
The Most Important Part: Keep it Clean!
We can’t emphasize this enough. Besides resting, an essential part of a pain-free recovery is to regularly flush your wounds to keep them clean. Caring for your mouth when you get home helps to avoid infections and complications.
Your dentist will give you exact instructions on how to best care for your wounds right after the surgery. You’re probably going to want to rest, and sleep is the best thing to do on the first day. These may include not immediately brushing, rinsing, or flossing your teeth for a day after the surgery.
After the first day, our general recommendations for recovery include:
- Resting as much as possible.
- Rinsing your mouth with salt water to keep the wound clean. Don’t spit the water out when you rinse — tip your mouth over the sink instead to let the water fall out.
- Dab the wound gently with gauze to absorb any excess flood.
The wound left after surgery won’t fully heal for a few months, so it’s important to know that there is a chance of infection weeks after the surgery. For this reason, it’s crucial to take care of yourself and your dental health, and pay attention to any sign of trouble.
Complications After Surgery
If you start to notice any of the following complications, it could be a sign of infection. Seek help immediately from your dentist if you experience:
- Trouble swallowing or breathing
- Bleeding that is not controllable with pressure and gauze
- Numbness in the incision site or mouth in general
- Swelling that gets worse over time
If a blood clot is disrupted, you’ll be in increased pain and risk for infection. When this happens, it’s called dry socket — and it’s not a pleasant experience. It will require another appointment with your dentist to give you medication to treat the infection. That’s why we emphasize taking care of your mouth following your surgery!
Wisdom Teeth Removal at RAN Dental
At RAN Dental, we know that many people have extreme anxiety or fear about going to the dentist, and surgery can create even more nervousness. That’s why we strive to make every visit a positive experience to help alleviate some of the apprehension.
Our friendly and knowledgeable office staff provide upfront information about costs, insurance coverage, and billing, so there aren’t any surprises later. We’ll provide the best possible care for every member of your family, no matter their age. We’ll make sure your road to recovery is as timely and painless as possible!
If you have any questions about getting your wisdom teeth removed, contact the team at Robert A. Neal, DDS Family Dentistry for all your needs.