How long does it take to recover from Wisdom Tooth Removal?
Recovering from wisdom tooth removal is a process that may take some time and requires you to carefully monitor the site and take care of yourself. It’s important that you follow instructions from your dentist to speed up the recovery and prevent gum disease or infection from occurring. There are several factors that may affect how long it takes for your wisdom tooth extraction site to heal.
Factors Affecting the Healing Process
You may not realise it, but certain foods can affect the healing process. Most people know to avoid solid, hard to chew foods, hot foods and beverages are also off the table following the first few hours after extraction. To avoid dislodging the clot or stitches at the back of your mouth, you’ll want to avoid chewing anything back there so a soft food diet is recommended in the initial weeks. If you have any questions about when to resume your normal diet or what you can eat following your treatment, please contact our team at Tooth Crusader on (02) 8097 1838.
Most dentists will recommend resting for a few days following your extraction as well. This means no work or physical activity the day of and the day following the procedure. Keeping your head elevated during this rest period can also help the healing process.
Rinse with a teaspoon of salt dissolved in a warm cup of water helps to remove food particles and kill bacteria in the site. It serves as a natural painkiller and will help prevent any infections from developing. This should only be done after the first 24 hours as you should not be rinsing at all immediately following the procedure. We will also give you a care pack which includes a small Colgate Savacol mouthwash to keep the area clean.
How do I know if my tooth extraction area is healing?
Following your wisdom tooth extraction, you should closely monitor the area to ensure it stays clean and healthy. There are several stages of healing starting with the clot that will form where you tooth was extracted. This should appear in the first 24 hours and may cause some minor swelling and bleeding, however, these symptoms are normal and expected. Ibuprofen can help ease the swelling and reduce discomfort.
You should be careful not to dislodge this clot as it can cause a painful complication known as dry socket. To avoid this, we recommend not brushing the area or drinking through a straw. After approximately three days, the site will begin to heal and close which leads to the third and final stage seven to ten days after the procedure where the extraction site should be closed and your gums no longer tender or swollen. This is also about the time that you may need to come back and see us to have any stitches removed and to ensure everything is healing on track. (There is no cost for this appointment)
All in all, recovery after wisdom tooth removal tends to take roughly two weeks to completely heal. However, if you experience any fever, intense jaw or gum pain, numbness in the mouth, excessive bleeding that won’t stop, swelling that won’t subside or pus in the open socket, please call our team at Tooth Crusader today on (02) 8097 1838. It’s important to always follow the aftercare instruction provided to you by your dentist however, there are some simple tips that each patient can try to speed up recovery including taking pain medication as directed, removing the gauze 3-4 hours after extraction, rinsing your mouth with salt water or Colgate Savacol several times a day after the first 24 hours and icing your cheeks in the extraction area for 15 minute intervals several times a day.
For more information, please book a consultation or call our office to speak to one of our friendly staff today.