Impacted wisdom teeth typically will need to be removed surgically, and as with any surgical procedure, the patient should be aware of the post-operative considerations and care. Following the post-extraction instructions will reduce your chances of complications.
You will meet with the oral surgeon for an evaluation prior to the extraction, and you may receive specific post-operative directions at that time, or you may get this information in writing immediately before the procedure. You should feel free to ask questions at any time, however.
Dry sockets are the most common problem that develops after a patient’s wisdom teeth are removed. This is a painful issue that occurs when the clot that protects the empty socket either fails to form or is dislodged prematurely. Fortunately, patients can reduce their risk of dry sockets by avoiding drinking straws and smoking until they have healed fully following the procedure.
Of course, reducing the risk of infection also is always a concern after surgery, and that is true of wisdom tooth extraction, too. Follow the surgeon’s directions for keeping the surgery site clean, such as rinsing with warm salt water. Be sure to take good care of the rest of your smile during the days following your extraction, too!
In general, you will want to avoid activities that can interfere with healing. In addition to abstaining from smoking, you should limit vigorous activity until you get clearance to exercise again. You may also need to modify your diet to focus on softer foods for a few days after your procedure.
Your oral surgeon will schedule a follow-up appointment to check on your healing after the procedure and may identify any concerns at that time. However, it is imperative for the patient to be aware of symptoms that indicate a problem with healing, such as persistent bleeding, noticeable pus, fever or significant discomfort. If you develop an urgent issue, bring it to the surgeon’s attention as soon as possible. You will receive information on how to reach the surgeon outside of normal business hours, if necessary.
Patients who are facing wisdom tooth extraction should fully understand the instructions they need to follow to care for the extraction sites after the procedure. If you have any questions before or after your wisdom tooth extraction, please call Texas Oral Surgery Specialists at 817-552-3223 to consult with one of our knowledgeable staff members.