Preparing For Your Wisdom Teeth Removal

Having wisdom teeth removed is a common procedure for your dentist. But you only get it done once, so you're a little anxious. Knowing what to expect and how to prepare for it can ease your mind. With a little support from friends and family, in a few days, you'll wonder why you worried at all. Here is what you can expect from your wisdom teeth removal.

Prior to the Appointment

Ask a friend or family member to take you to the dentist and bring you back home after the procedure. You'll be a little groggy and unable to drive for awhile. You may also need to stop at a drug store on the way home to pick up prescriptions for antibiotics and pain relief from your dentist.

Arrange for someone to stay with you the remainder of the day after you get home. Your priority will be rest, but it will be nice to have someone to help you with the simple tasks around the house until the effects of the sedation are completely gone.

The Day Before the Procedure

Pick up some soup, juice, canned fruit and other easy-to-eat items for the first few days home. Your dentist will restrict you to soft foods while your jaw and gums are healing.

At the drug store, pick up a cold pack to reduce any swelling and some ibuprofen for pain. Once you run out of the pain medication your dentist prescribes, the ibuprofen will keep the swelling down and control the pain.

The Day of the Procedure

You'll be in the dentist chair for the procedure, which should take less than an hour. You're teeth and gums will be numbed, as with most dental procedures, and you may be given some other sedative if you need it to relax. You'll feel no pain during the extraction, but the dentist will be pushing and pulling on your jaw for awhile. This may make you uncomfortable enough to want a sedative.

After the procedure you'll be taken to the waiting room to relax for a short time to make sure there is no bleeding or reaction to the sedation. The dentist may put stitches in the gums and ask you to hold a piece of gauze on top of the area until you get home. They will have you replace the gauze at home and change it regularly until you see no more sign of bleeding. Once the dentist is satisfied that you will be fine, your friend can take you home.

Recovering at Home

When you get home, you'll want to rest for the remainder of the day. Have a glass of water handy when you want to rinse out your mouth. Use the cool pack for brief periods against your jaw to help keep down the swelling. Take your pain medication on schedule. Don't let the pain become severe before taking the medication or it won't be as effective.

Your dentist will ask you to call them about any unusual signs such as:

  • a resumption of bleeding that does not stop
  • swelling that doesn't go away
  • pain when you push against the jaw near where the teeth were extracted

These could be an indication of a suture that slipped off or even infection.

Wisdom teeth extraction is a common procedure, but everyone reacts differently. Prepare to make a day of it with plenty of rest when you get home. Contact HC Dentistry for more information.