wisdom teeth surgery recovery

You don’t have to be afraid of wisdom teeth surgery! At MI Smiles Dental, our wisdom teeth dentists are here to help your surgery and wisdom teeth recovery process be stress-free. Below we have a few ways to make the healing process go as smoothly as possible.

Prepare Before Surgery

Not only do we want you to have a comfortable dental experience in one of our four West Michigan offices, but we want you to be comfortable at home as well. Before you even come in for oral surgery, there are a lot of things you can do to prepare yourself for the recovery.

One of the most important things you can do is make sure your recovery space is set up before you get home. Setting everything up after your wisdom teeth surgery can be a major hassle. You’re going to want to sit down, rest, and not fuss with blankets, pillows, or your comfy armchair.

Queue Netflix

It may sound silly, but a good movie can help your recovery process because movies help us relax. Try watching a movie after oral surgery.

Maybe you have a long, ever-growing list on Netflix. Or maybe there’s that show everyone at the office talks about. Now is your time to sit back, relax, and recover from a wisdom tooth extraction!

Stick to Soft Foods

For a few days, you’ll want to eat only soft foods.

Things like chocolates, hard fruits, and salty nut snacks will be the last thing you want to try after a tooth extraction. These are hard to chew and can get stuck where your teeth used to be.

Before your wisdom teeth removal, be sure to go to the store to stock up on foods that require little to no chewing to avoid a mouth cleaning hassle. Here are a few good ideas:

  • Bread
  • Jello
  • Pureed soups
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Scrambled eggs

We recommend eating these in small doses.

TIP: If you need to soften something up, let it soak in water! It may be less appetizing, but it’s much easier to eat.

Treat Your Mouth

After surgery, we recommend using gauze to help with the bleeding.

Apply gauze to the swollen area and gently bite down. If bleeding continues, rinse your mouth and repeat the process.

Do not keep gauze in for more than 30 minutes at a time. If excessive bleeding does not stop after a few hours, call our office.

A high amount of saliva is normal after dental surgery. Don’t worry if you’re experiencing that! While in recovery, do not do anything that involves strain or excessive activity as this can increase the bleeding.

Do Not Use Straws

Not only are they bad for the environment, but sucking on a straw after your wisdom teeth extraction will slow the healing process.

You might think that not having to chew your food is a benefit, and that’s true! But sucking on a straw will prevent your sutures from healthy oral healing after your tooth extraction surgery.

TIP: Avoid smoking after oral surgery. We recommend you avoid smoking at all times anyway, but especially avoid smoking after oral surgery. Not only is it bad for your health and teeth, but it also prevents your sutures from a healthy recovery!

Try to Avoid Lying Down

After your wisdom teeth surgery, you may find yourself tired or drowsy from your type of sedation. When you get home, your first reaction might be to sleep, but we want to caution you against lying down.

Rather than lying on your bed, we strongly suggest resting in a reclining chair. After wisdom teeth surgery, leaning back in a chair puts less pressure on your jaw, which saves you from a lot of pain.

Clean Out Food With an Irrigation Syringe

As your local dentist, we recommend using an irrigation syringe to help clean your mouth. A small syringe will help flush out the gunk that may get stuck in your gums.

We recommend five to six rinses for the first few days, always after a meal. Be sure not to over-rinse your mouth as this can cause agitation after oral surgery. If you choose not to use a syringe, avoid aggressively rinsing your mouth as this can also slow the healing process.

If a piece of food gets stuck in the spot your tooth used to be, don’t panic. Rinse it out slowly with the syringe. If you’re up for it, we recommend doing so with warm salt water as this will help your mouth heal after oral surgery.

TIP: It is okay to brush your teeth the night of your surgery, but do so at a gentle pace.

Ready to Plan Your Visit?

Whether you or a loved one has an upcoming wisdom teeth removal, we hope you feel a little more prepared now. As your West Michigan family dentist, MI Smiles Dental is here to make sure all your dental needs get treated with the best care.

With four practices in West Michigan, we have the capability of handling all of your family’s dental needs. To schedule an appointment, call MI Smiles Dental at (616) 974-4990.