Dos and Don’ts After Wisdom Teeth Removal

Healing after wisdom teeth removal usually goes smoothly, provided you follow Dr. Valientes post-surgical care instructions. Getting plenty of rest, staying hydrated, and ensuring proper nutrition are vital aspects of your recovery. Keeping track of what you can and cannot do in the days following wisdom tooth extraction can be challenging, so weve put together a list of Dos and Don’ts for easy reference.

Dos Following Wisdom Tooth Extraction

  • Bite down on gauze the first hour or two following surgery to encourage clotting.
  • Sleep and rest with your head elevated to reduce swelling.
  • Use ice packs for the first 48-72 hours. A schedule of 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off whenever you are awake helps minimize swelling and pain.
  • After the first 48 hours you can switch to warm compresses.
  • Eat a liquid diet for the first day, followed by a soft food diet and increase the consistency of your food as you are feeling better during the first week following surgery.
  • Open and close your mouth frequently to prevent the jaw from stiffening.
  • Take all medications as prescribed.
  • Drink lots of water and non-carbonated drinks to stay hydrated.
  • Rest and nap as much as possible for the first few days.
  • Take a day or two off from work.
  • Gently swish salt water in the mouth and let it drain out (do not spit).

Donts Following Wisdom Teeth Extraction:

  • Do not engage in strenuous exercise for the first 72 hours.
  • Do not use drinking straws or suck on hard candies, etc. Doing so may dislodge the blood clot and lead to a painful dry socket.
  • Do not each crunchy or hard foods such as popcorn, chips, or hard candies for the first week.
  • Do not spit.
  • Do not smoke.
  • Do not skip medications or stretch out the dosing recommendations.
  • Do not probe or poke the extraction site.

Learn more about proper post-operative care following wisdom teeth removal on our page regarding wisdom teeth surgery aftercare.

If the extraction site continues to bleed, your pain or swelling increases after the first few days, you run a fever, or you have any questions during your recovery, contact our office as soon as possible. We can be reached at 813-968-5400.