Wisdom teeth removal is a common dental procedure for many young adults. While removing impacted or infected wisdom teeth is important to protect your oral health, recovering from this surgery can sometimes be painful.
Luckily, there are ways to ease the discomfort and make the healing process smoother. This article shares three helpful tips to help you recover after wisdom teeth removal.
After wisdom teeth removal, it's important to rest to allow your body to heal. Make sure you get enough rest and sleep, especially in the first few days post-treatment. Doing so can foster healing, reduce inflammation, and ultimately reduce swelling caused by the procedure.
Plan accordingly and take some time off work or school. Avoid pushing yourself too hard and take it easy, as excessive physical activity may exacerbate pain and swelling. You might even accidentally dislodge the blood clot, which may lead to a painful condition called dry socket.
If you experience heavy bleeding, contact your dentist or oral surgeon immediately. They can provide instructions on how to properly manage the situation and keep your recovery on track.
Manage Pain and Swelling
Swelling, inflammation, and pain are natural postoperative effects of wisdom teeth removal. However, you don't have to suffer through them all the time. Your dentist will likely prescribe some painkillers to help manage the pain, but you can also try some at-home remedies to supplement them.
Ice packs, for instance, can reduce swelling and inflammation. Place them on your cheeks for a few minutes at a time, but don't apply the pack directly to your gums.
Use a cloth or other protective layer as a barrier between the ice and your skin. You can also gently massage the area with oil or a soothing balm. This helps loosen up the muscles and increase circulation to reduce inflammation and pain.
Remember to also maintain good oral hygiene. Gently rinse your mouth a few times a day after surgery with a salt and warm water solution. This helps remove any lingering debris in your mouth while reducing bacteria that can cause infection. Avoid brushing your teeth or using other oral hygiene products until your dentist gives you the green light.
Avoid Certain Foods and Behaviors
During the healing process, it's important to avoid some foods and behaviors that may hinder the healing process. Avoid crunchy, spicy, acidic, or sticky foods and hard-to-chew meats like steaks, nuts, and granola. These foods may cause pain and damage to the wound's site.
Eat soft, easy-to-digest foods, such as soups, smoothies, or pudding, to limit discomfort. But don't drink through a straw, as the suction can dislodge the blood clot. Instead, drink from a cup or glass using a spoon.
Lastly, try to sleep with your head elevated with pillows or a recliner to reduce swelling. This will also make it easier to open and close your mouth without causing too much discomfort.
For more tips, contact a local dental clinic, such as Conestoga Oral Surgery.