How Long Does it Take to Recover from Wisdom Teeth Removal?

wisdom tooth removalRoyal Oak and Birmingham, MI

Wisdom teeth removal is common among young adults. Usually, dentists recommend removing impacted wisdom teeth between the ages of 18 and 24 because most individuals do not have enough room for these teeth to erupt. Wisdom teeth often partially emerge, which cause concerns later if not removed, or are impacted, meaning they are sideways under the gum, pushing on the roots of the back molars. Very few individuals have a large enough jaw and enough room in their mouth for their wisdom teeth, which is why removing them is usually the best option.

If you’re considering getting your wisdom teeth removed, or the dentist has told you that it’s time for this procedure, you may wonder how long the recovery takes. Today on the blog, our family dentist in Royal Oak, Dr. Nancy Hartrick, shares how long it takes to recover from wisdom teeth removal.

Wisdom tooth recovery depends on the surgical process as well as how many wisdom teeth are removed. First, let’s discuss the different types of techniques used to remove wisdom teeth.

Basic Extraction

A basic extraction involves numbing the treatment area and then removing the tooth. In these cases, there is no surgery required, and the patient remains awake during the procedure.

Recovering from a basic extraction

Recovery after a basic extraction may vary. Since many individuals opt to have all four wisdom teeth removed at one visit, expect your entire mouth to be numb for several hours following the procedure. Your jaw will be sore and you will likely experience mild discomfort. However, most patients find relief by placing ice packs on their cheeks for 20 minutes at a time, several times a day, as well as taking over-the-counter pain relievers. You may find that you prefer to eat a soft foods diet for the first few days after treatment.

Surgical Extraction

If your wisdom teeth are impacted, the dentist may recommend a surgical extraction in which tiny incisions are made in the gum to allow access to the teeth, and then the teeth are removed. Oftentimes, surgical cases require sutures or stitches to seal the surgical site and help with healing. Surgical extractions of this nature can usually be performed by a general dentist, although in some cases, your dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon if you need to be put to sleep during the treatment or have a complicated surgical extraction.

Recovering from a surgical extraction

While a surgical extraction is a bit more involved than a basic extraction, you will likely deal with the same amount of discomfort and your recovery will be similar. However, if you were put to sleep for your wisdom teeth extraction, your recovery will be quite different. Plan ahead by having someone drive you to and from your appointment. This individual should be a trusted adult that can stay with you for the first 24 hours to observe any side effects and to help care for you. But after the first 24 hours, your recovery will be similar to the other techniques.

Recovering from wisdom teeth removal looks different for everyone. However, most individuals may find that they need to eat soft foods for the first few days to a week afterward, although this timeframe varies, depending on your pain tolerance and natural healing abilities. It is vital that you avoid smoking, drinking through a straw, and spitting forcefully for the first 48 hours following the removal of your wisdom teeth. This helps prevent dislodging the blood clots that form after the teeth are removed. If the blood clot dislodges or you experience extreme pain, you could have a dry socket, which is an infection in the extraction site that requires immediate care by a dentist.

Wisdom Teeth Removal in Royal Oak and Birmingham, Michigan

Wisdom teeth removal and recovery will look different for everyone. But you should expect to feel some mild discomfort for the first few days, although you may be able to return to your usual activities and work after the first 24 hours as long as you do not experience excessive bleeding or pain. If you’d like to schedule an appointment for wisdom teeth removal or need to schedule a consultation, please call Hartrick Dentistry at (248) 549-0950.

Posted in General Dentistry