Four Mistakes To Avoid After Wisdom Tooth Removal

Wisdom tooth removal is a fairly routine process today. Though it may seem intimidating, it should actually be fairly fast and painless -- as long as you follow your dentist's directions. There are some mistakes that can make the process more unpleasant or uncomfortable, which you should try your best to avoid.

1. Using Straws or Smoking

When you get your wisdom teeth removed, there is usually an open socket where the tooth used to be. This area forms a scab "plug" that aids healing and reduces pain. If you use straws or smoke, you may accidentally dislodge the plug. This will delay your healing.

2. Waiting to Take Pain Medication

It's important that you follow the directions on your pain medication bottles closely. If necessary, set a timer for your next pill -- and keep taking your prescription until it is completed. Wisdom tooth pain can be fairly severe. If you wait until you begin to feel pain, the medication is still going to take anywhere from half an hour to an hour to work. If you do miss your medication and end up in pain, you can use a topical treatment such as clove oil.

3. Taking the Wrong Pain Medication

You should always take the medication that your doctors give you. Commonplace pain medications such as aspirin and acetaminophen are usually not intended for lengthy use or usage in large quantities. In fact, they can cause issues like increased bleeding or liver damage. Further, you often need to use more of it to get the same results as a stronger pain medication. If you need medication and have run out, a call to your doctor should get you a temporary prescription.

4. Not Cleaning Properly

It's important that you begin your natural oral hygiene routine as quickly as possible following your wisdom tooth removal. Though you may be tempted to avoid your back teeth due to the pain, it can lead to problems later on with your other back molars. Failing to clean your mouth and gums properly could also lead to an infection or a cyst. 

Your doctor and their dental hygienist can give you more information regarding your wisdom tooth removal. In general, it's important to keep the area clean and to take the medications that you've been provided. Avoid harder foods for the first week following your dental surgery, and concentrate on foods that are non-acidic. If you follow these directions, you should be back to normal within the month. Contact a dentist, such as Dr. Peter L Drob, for more information.