Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the last set of teeth to erupt. Often, they do not cause any problems, but there are cases that necessitate their removal. If you are experiencing pain, early signs of gum disease, or other oral health problems, you may need a wisdom tooth extraction at the office of Steven C. Hewett, DDS in Champions Gate, FL. Today, we’re looking at how long recovery from wisdom tooth removal takes, when it is necessary, and much more.
How Long Is Recovery After Removing Wisdom Teeth?
Recovery after having a wisdom tooth removed can take up to two weeks to complete. However, some people can recover in just seven to 10 days. How long your recovery will take depends on several factors, including the number of teeth removed, the complexity of the tooth extraction, and your overall health.
Generally, the healthier you are, the faster you can expect to heal. Additionally, as a general rule, the more complex the tooth extraction is, the longer your recovery will take.
Other Commonly Asked Questions Answered
Why Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed?
There are several reasons why third molars may need to be removed. Often, wisdom tooth removal is recommended for the treatment of overcrowding, a condition that occurs when the jaw is not large enough to accommodate the third molars. This condition can result in other teeth shifting, causing significant problems.
Wisdom tooth removal is also sometimes necessary to treat impaction. Impacted third molars may grow at an angle or fail to erupt fully. This can result in such problems as damage to adjacent teeth, infections, and pain. Gum disease and tooth decay can also be caused by third molars.
What Can I Eat After Wisdom Tooth Removal?
After wisdom tooth removal, it is essential to follow a soft food diet for at least a few days. At first, you may only want to eat cottage cheese, lukewarm scrambled eggs, oatmeal, and pancakes. Other great foods to eat include yogurt, pudding, Jell-O, and ice cream. Applesauce is another great option.
What Should I Exclude From My Diet After My Wisdom Tooth Removal?
For the first few days following your tooth extraction, you should not consume any hot foods, like steaming-hot soups. Similarly, you should avoid drinking anything hot. Furthermore, you should not drink alcohol for at least 24 hours following your wisdom tooth removal, and you should never consume alcohol while taking analgesics.
How Should I Eat After My Tooth Extraction?
After your tooth extraction, it is important that you do not chew food with the side of your mouth that was treated. If you have wisdom teeth removed from both sides of your mouth, you should try to not consume anything that needs to be chewed for a few days.
Additionally, it is crucial to note that if you want a smoothie or milkshake, you should consume it with a spoon rather than a straw. If you suck anything through a straw, it is possible to dislodge the blood clot helping the extraction site heal. You should not eat anything crunchy, chewy, or tough for at least seven days following your tooth extraction.
How Else Should I Care for Myself During My Recovery?
Sticking to soft or liquid foods for a few days following your wisdom tooth removal is only one of several aftercare guidelines you will need to follow. It is also extremely important that you do not drink alcohol or smoke for 24 hours following your tooth removal. Additionally, you should not do anything physically strenuous, like HIIT or weight lifting, for a few days after your wisdom tooth removal.
Furthermore, when you lie down after your tooth removal, you should keep your head elevated by using at least two thick pillows. It is also crucial that you bite down on sterile gauze placed over the extraction site to help promote clotting. You should change the gauze pad when it becomes saturated. Additionally, you should apply a cold compress to your cheek on the treated side of your mouth.
How Should I Maintain My Oral Health After My Wisdom Tooth Removal?
We will advise you on how to care for your oral health during your initial consultation. We will review these instructions with you again once your wisdom tooth has been removed to ensure that the instructions are clear. One of the most important steps you must take to maintain your oral hygiene after your tooth extraction is to brush your teeth very gently. However, you should not brush the extraction site for a few days.
You should also floss your teeth and rinse with a warm saline solution after every meal. You should not spit out this solution after rinsing because spitting could dislodge the blood clot in your extraction site. Also, you should note that you should avoid using mouthwash containing alcohol to prevent irritation to your extraction site.
How Should I Prepare for My Wisdom Tooth Removal?
The most important wisdom tooth removal preparation step is to attend an initial consultation with a dentist. During this consultation, we will discuss your concerns and goals and make sure that a tooth extraction is the best solution for your problems. If we determine that you are a good candidate for this treatment, we will advise you on everything else you should do to prepare for your extraction.
Another very important preparation step to take is to arrange for someone to drive you home after your appointment. You will not be able to drive yourself home due to the anesthetic administered to keep you comfortable during the extraction. Furthermore, you should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes and make sure that you have plenty of soft foods and protein-rich liquids on hand for your recovery.
When Is the Best Time To Have Wisdom Tooth Removal?
The best time to have one or more of your wisdom teeth removed depends on several factors, including your age and the development of your teeth. Often, it is ideal to have a wisdom tooth removed when you are between the ages of 17 and 25 because your roots are not fully developed, so the extraction is easier. If you are in school, you may want to schedule your extraction over summer break so that you can dedicate yourself to your recovery fully.
It also may be a good time to consider having one or more of your wisdom teeth removed before you start to have serious problems. For instance, you may want to have a problematic tooth removed when you only have mild or moderate chronic pain rather than severe pain, periodontal disease, damage to surrounding teeth, or gum or tooth infections.
Learn More About Wisdom Tooth Removal Today
In some cases, wisdom tooth removal recovery can take 14 days to complete, but, in other cases, recovery can be over in just seven to 10 days. Among the factors that affect the length of your recovery period are the number of teeth removed and the choices you make after your tooth removal. We invite you to learn more about wisdom tooth removal by scheduling an appointment with us today at the office of Steven C. Hewett, DDS in Champions Gate, FL.