Wisdom Teeth Oral Surgery
Between the ages of 17 and 24, wisdom teeth usually emerge from the gum. When these teeth are healthy and properly aligned, they do not have to be removed. Unfortunately, many times this is not the case.
When wisdom teeth (also called 'third molars') erupt, they may have to be extracted for several reasons:
These problems are usually resolved by removal of the impacted third molars. And early removal is recommended to avoid more serious issues. With an oral examination and panoramic x-ray, Dr. Rogers can evaluate the position of the wisdom teeth and assess the likelihood of present or future problems.
Removal of wisdom teeth is normally performed with local anesthesia and nitrous oxide; IV sedation is also available upon request. After removal, gauze is placed in the extracted areas to control bleeding. The gum tissue may be sutured (stitched) if necessary. After surgery, a post-operative kit is provided, which includes care instruction, prescriptions for pain and antibiotic medications. We will also schedule a follow-up appointment approximately 7 to 10 days following surgery.
Dental Surgery Post-Operative Instructions
NOTE: The following generalized post-operative care instructions apply to many oral surgery procedures. However, always follow specific post-operative and other care instructions given to you by your health care providers. If you have any problems or questions, please be sure to promptly discuss them with Dr. Rogers or his staff.
Biting on the gauze pads will probably be necessary for the first few hours to control bleeding. Be sure to change them every 15 minutes or so. Keep the head elevated and rest. Do not spit or rinse excessively, or engage in physical activity since this stimulates bleeding. Some oozing could last up to 24 hours.
NOTE: If heavy bleeding persists, replace the gauze with a clean folded gauze pad placed over the surgery site and maintain pressure until the bleeding stops. In rare cases, a tea bag (tannic acid) may need to be used to encourage clotting (regular, not herbal tea). Call our office if your bleeding does not stop or remains heavy.
Swelling is normal following any surgical procedure in the mouth. It should reach its maximum within 48 to 72 hours and then diminish by the fifth to eighth day after the procedure. The anti-swelling medications we often prescribe can substantially reduce swelling and speed up recovery.
Place ice or cold compresses on the face in the area of the surgery for ten minutes every half-hour for the first eight to twelve hours. Ice is only effective on the day of surgery.
The greatest discomfort will occur as the anesthetic wears off, usually within 1 to 2 hours after the procedure. If a long-acting anesthetic was used, you may be numb for much longer. Pain medications can require 30 to 45 minutes to take effect, so do not wait for pain to become severe before taking your prescribed medication dosage. The pain should gradually diminish over the next few days.
Avoid smoking during the first week after surgery.
A nutritious liquid diet is necessary for the first day. Hard foods eaten while the mouth is numb can dislodge sutures (stitches) and cause other problems. As the numbness wears off, you can gradually progress to harder foods.
You should rest and relax for at least 24 to 48 hours after any dental surgical procedure.
The Day After Surgery
WARNING: Antibiotics can cause birth control pills to become temporarily ineffective. Be sure to consult with Dr. Rogers if this is a concern.
Contact The W. Todd Rogers Dental Office Immediately if You Experience:
Suggested Diet After Oral Surgery
Selections should be included from the four basic food groups:
Soft cheeses such as cottage cheese, cream cheese, milk, ice cream, and pudding or custard
Meat & Protein
Tender pieces of ground meats, chicken, fish without bones, and cooked legumes
Fruit and Vegetables
Cooked or canned fruits, ripe bananas, vegetables without skins or seeds, mashed potatoes, and squash
Bread and Cereal Group
Soft bread, macaroni, noodles, rice, spaghetti, cooked breakfast cereals with milk, ready-to-eat flaked and puffed wheat or rice
Milk, carbonated drinks, juices, tea or coffee
Extras (for in between meals)
Milk drinks, fruit or vegetable juices, eggnog, ice cream or broth