When a wisdom tooth is giving you problems, the most common is to extract it. In fact, this is one of the main reasons people go to the dentist. That is why it is vital to know your do’s and don’ts after wisdom teeth extraction.
Things you should know about wisdom teeth extraction.
After the wisdom teeth removal, a white layer called fibrin forms, and over time it becomes gum. The fibrin is caused by an enzyme called thrombin that is part of a clotting process.
The blood clot forms in the socket. This protects the underlying bone and nerves as it heals. When the clot is lost or does not form properly, the bone and nerves are exposed to air.
This gives way to bacteria that can access the wound, which can cause infection.
This is why the fibrin is a positive indicator that the wound is healing well.
Commonly, it takes a couple of weeks for the gum to form and close the extraction hole.
It is not until 4 to 6 months that the wound is fully healed with bone formation.
Do’s after wisdom teeth removal.
- Take only the medications that the dentist has prescribed.
- Apply ice to reduce swelling. Applying ice or cold compresses also helps heal the gums and prevent inflammation.
- Sleep with your head up. Try sleeping with two pillows to rest your head at a higher level than the rest of your body.
- Follow a bland diet.
- In the first 24 hours, preferably drink cold drinks, and always drink in small gulps.
- Eat cold foods.
- Keep three to four days of absolute rest.
- If you have had stitches, let them go out on their own or go to the dentist to remove them if he has indicated it.
Don’ts after wisdom teeth removal.
- Avoid hard and gummy foods that could get stuck in the cavity. Also, avoid consuming crunchy foods.
- Avoid sucking through straws.
- Avoid hot and spicy foods like soup. It may irritate the wound.
- Avoid spitting. If you feel the urge, just place a tissue in your mouth and let the fluid flow.
- You can keep your mouth clean but do not brush your teeth, rinse your mouth, spit, or use mouthwash for the first 24 hours after surgery. The first brushing can be done after the first 24 hours. Do it using a brush with very soft bristles and avoid the wound area.
- Refrain from smoking and drinking alcohol for up to three months. Tobacco and alcohol after an extraction impede healing and promotes wound infection. They are also toxic substances that could irritate the area.
- Avoid aggressive brushing for at least a couple of months.
- Avoid any physical exertion. For example, lifting heavy things. Physical effort is contraindicated from the hours after your surgery. Also, any type of sports and any physical activity that involves increased blood pumping should be avoided, as it can cause bleeding, inflammation, and/or pain.
- Avoid driving the first two days after your surgery. The reason? After the surgery, the anesthesia that the dentist puts on you can sometimes take a couple of days to diminish its effects. This can cause distractions that create unexpected risks.
When to call the dentist?
Call your dentist if after a week you experience the following symptoms:
- Swelling of the face.
- Inflammation in the gums.
- Yellow, yellow-green, or foul-smelling discharge from the wound.
- It seems that the edges are opening.
- Heat in the wound.
- An abscess develops.
- Pus comes out.
- Intense pain.
- Difficulty opening the mouth.