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A Guide to Recovery After Wisdom Teeth Removal

Jul 08, 2021
Wisdom teeth can be a pain to deal with. Wisdom teeth can be physically uncomfortable and cause significant dental problems down the road if not dealt with properly.

Wisdom teeth can be a pain to deal with. Wisdom teeth can be physically uncomfortable and cause significant dental problems down the road if not dealt with properly. However, wisdom teeth removal can often seem daunting. As much of a frustration as they are, you need to prioritize getting your wisdom teeth removed sooner rather than later. When choosing a dentist to preform your wisdom teeth removal, it is important to look for the best dental care in Scottsdale, AZ. What presents more of a challenge for many patients is the aftermath of oral surgery. What does the road to recovery after wisdom teeth removal look like? To help answer that question, this article compiles basic information and some important tips about how to care for yourself (or a loved one) after surgery.

The First 24 Hours After Wisdom Teeth Removal

The first 24 hours after any surgery is typically the most difficult period. It’s important to be cautious and aware of how your body is doing. A few things you will want to pay attention to are pain, bleeding at the surgery site, and the things you eat and drink.

How to deal with the pain

Unfortunately, surgery recovery usually involves a bit of pain. Some people handle this part of the process better than others. Reactions to wisdom teeth removal and pain medication range from small aches akin to a small sinus headache to full facial tension. Most doctors will send you home with a prescription for pain medication or instructions to use over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen. Avoid aspirin as it is also a blood thinner and could cause extra bleeding at the surgery site is used. Really, the best way to address wisdom teeth related pain is to focus on reducing swelling, so ice packs and heating pads applied along the jawline can sometimes be your best bet.

Bleeding after Wisdom Teeth Removal

After getting your wisdom teeth removed, expect a little bit of blood. It’s normal for wounds on our skin to bleed and clot during the healing process, and the inside of your mouth is no different. The amount of bleeding may appear excessive, especially during the first few hours due to mixing with saliva. In most cases, there is nothing to worry about, but if you are concerned do call your dentist and ask for instruction. In addition to the aforementioned pain medication, after surgery, you will be sent home with gauze to bite down on to help deal with the bleeding.

Food and Drink

Soft foods are your best choice soon after your surgery. It is unlikely that you would need to go on an all-liquid diet, but if you have concerns feel free to talk to your doctor. The main thing to focus on is not placing pressure on your jaw muscles or the empty tooth socket. Avoid foods that require a lot of chewing like crackers or hard fruits. It’s also important to avoid any form of alcohol and drinks that come in extreme temperatures like coffee. After dental surgery, your teeth are more likely to be sensitive to extreme hot and cold so it’s best to stick to foods and drinks that can be served at or near room temperature. Lastly, whatever you do, do not use a straw. Using a straw creates a vacuum inside your mouth that can irritate or even remove the clot over the empty tooth socket and can cause significant pain.


Whether wisdom teeth removal is easy for you to get through or difficult, remember that you will still have gone through surgery. Your body needs rest to heal properly. Avoid driving, operating heavy machinery, exercise, or any strenuous physical activity. The best dental care in Scottsdale AZ will do you no good if you don’t let your body go through the healing process. Give yourself a few days to recuperate by taking it easy.

The Next 2-3 Weeks

After getting through the first day after your surgery you still have some things to be aware of. Expect continued aches and occasional bleeding. Be sure to continue treating both the way you did during the first few hours and remain on a soft diet until you are cleared by a doctor. At this point, there are a few extra things to keep in mind.

Dental Hygiene

Your gumline and teeth are still sensitive but keeping your mouth clean is an important part of keeping it healthy. Before your surgery, make sure and get a manual toothbrush with soft bristles so you can slowly and gently clean your teeth. It’s also a good idea to avoid flossing near where your wisdom teeth used to be. To clean the surgery site it’s best to rinse your mouth using a warm saltwater solution, however, your dentist may provide you with a special mouthwash as well.

Check-in with Your Doctor

In the first few weeks after surgery, it is important to check back in with your doctor. Even if everything seems to be going smoothly, it’s still important to allow a professional to ensure everything is as it seems. The bones in your jaw can often take as long as 3-6 months to fully recover and it’s important to ensure early that they are recovering right. If you have any questions or are unclear about certain symptoms or restrictions after surgery, ask your doctor during those first few weeks. If you decide to come to us for help in beginning the process of wisdom teeth removal we will be happy to help answer any questions you may have. Patient comfort is a priority, and it’s part of why we pride ourselves on providing the best dental care in Scottsdale, AZ.