medic dental local anaesthesiaQuestion: What do I do after wisdom tooth removal? Is there aftercare for wisdom tooth extraction?

Answers: After wisdom tooth care removal, you will need to take care of your wound just like any regular tooth extraction. However, if your extraction is complicated, in cases when wisdom tooth is impacted, infected or misaligned, you need to ask your dentist about a more efficient aftercare strategy to keep your wound from infection and for faster wound healing.

What Are Wisdom Tooth Removal Aftercare Tips?

Wisdom tooth removal is just like regular tooth extractions however there are some serious conditions of wisdom teeth that may complicate extraction procedures. Misaligned tooth, infection and impaction are just three of the most common reasons why there is a huge chance of acquiring an infection and prolonged wound healing. Using these aftercare tips, you will be able to control complications and help you care for your wound with ease.

About medications

  • Your dentist will prescribe antibiotics that will help prevent infection. There will also be medications for pain and fever which are two of the most common signs after your wisdom teeth removal. Your dentist will also recommend using medications for bleeding when you are prone to bleeding profusely after extraction.
  • Medications must be taken with care. Never go beyond what is recommended by your dentist and always follow your dosage. Antibiotics are often taken for a week or ten days; do not skip any dose and be sure to take one as soon as you remember.
  • Medications for pain will help reduce pain common after an extraction procedure. However, you may use natural pain treatments to reduce medication side effects. Your dentist must also advise you of any side effects of medications.

What you can and cannot eat

  • You must avoid eating hot foods since this will only cause bleeding and will delay wound healing. You must eat cold foods instead which will help soothe pain and swelling common after a dental procedure. It is customary to eat ice cream or a cold dessert, however remember to choose flavors wisely and choose ice cream without nuts, cookies and fruits.
  • Avoid hard foods especially on the affected site. Hard foods will pierce the area and may also remove the blood clot that is supposed to shield the open wound. Hard foods will also cause pressure on the area and will eventually lead to bleeding. You can prevent this by avoiding hard foods especially foods that need to be chewed very well for about a week after the procedure.
  • Avoid spicy foods. Spicy foods have chemicals that can only irritate the lining of the wound. Spices like peppers, curries and so much more must be avoided until the wound has completely healed. Strong spices like cayenne pepper will even increase the blood flow to the area and will eventually result in increased blood flow and bleeding.
  • Avoid starchy foods. There are carbohydrate rich foods with loads of starch like rice and breads which can stick on teeth and even get stuck on teeth causing bacteria build-up. Avoid these foods until your wound has healed; these may only get stuck in the tooth socket and cause pain and infection.
  • Be sure to gargle after eating, after you wake up in the morning and just before you go to bed. You may gargle with plain water and avoid strong mouthwashes for now.

Healthy teeth concept. Real human wisdom tooth dental mirror andOral care

  • Brushing the area is prohibited. Do not use toothpicks and flosses either. Just flush the dirt out with water. There is a thing called an empty socket which is a condition wherein the blood clot that is supposed to cover the empty tooth socket is prematurely removed or has dissolved. This blood clot is important since it is the foundation for new gum or bone growth. Brushing the area could remove this clot or severe gargling as well.
  • If you have stitches over the wound, your dentist will advise of a follow-up date when you can come to have them removed. Your dentist may also use absorbent sutures which reduces the need for follow up. But despite this, your wound must be monitored at all times for bleeding, infection and swelling which are signs of infection or
  • If you are instructed to come back for follow –up procedures, you must never forget to report. Follow-ups are meant to assess the healing of your wound and to determine your response to antibiotic treatment. Your dentist will also advise you to prepare for future interventions and appointments.

Signs of infection

  • Monitoring your wound is a part of being aware of your progress. Be sure to look for important signs of infection like swelling, pain, pus formation and bleeding. There is also infection when there is fever and severe pain.
  • For empty sockets, your dentist may ask you to come over for consultations. Flushing the area is a common procedure and this includes flushing water with the use of an injection to get rid of food and debris. He may also prescribe pain medications since pain due to empty sockets are very intense and may never reduce if OTC medications are used. Dentists may also stitch the area to prevent bleeding and foods bits that may get stuck in the tooth socket.

Lifestyle changes

  • Avoid smoking. Stop smoking for about weeks before the procedure and weeks after the procedure. Smoking delays wound healing and may affect the way the immune system handles infections. Smoking also destroys the cells and tissues of the body especially the respiratory system and the cardiovascular system. If you stop smoking, your wound will heal faster and your immune system will be able to defend your body from infection.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol. Alcohol dilates the area which can cause bleeding and affect wound healing. A small amount of alcohol is healthy for the body however; abusing will only affect your kidneys and your liver. Stopping alcohol or just sticking to the allowable intake per day is allowable but try to stay off alcohol days after your wisdom tooth removal.
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