Teens and young adults may dread the mere mention of wisdom teeth when they visit the dentist due to their notoriety. These third molars typically begin developing in adolescence, and erupt into the mouth between the ages of 17 and 25. Many people have their wisdom teeth extracted before the roots form in order to prevent complications that can be caused by these teeth. Our mouths do not usually have room for these extra teeth, causing crowding or damaging healthy teeth. Wisdom teeth may also lead to complications such as infection, periodontal disease, jaw pain, and cysts or tumors that can damage the jawbone.
The extraction will not have you bed-ridden, and all care needs can be met within the comfort of your own home. As with any type of surgery, there are a number of self-care steps that you should keep in mind in order to keep yourself comfortable and ensure that healing happens properly.
Avoid Straws, Soda, Alcohol, and Hot Beverages
Many individuals will ask “Can i drink soda after wisdom tooth removal”. After you have your wisdom teeth removed it’s important to avoid drinking soda and other carbonated drinks. (You shouldn’t drink these anyway to keep you teeth healthy.) The carbonation in the drinks can cause issues with the blood clot. Don’t be tempted to use a straw. The pressure created by sucking on a straw may also cause this painful condition.
Similarly, it’s best to avoid alcohol during your recovery period. Alcohol can dry out your mouth, interfering with your body’s ability to produce saliva, which plays a critical role in healing. Alcohol has also been linked to gum disease, which means it could potentially increase the risk of infection after wisdom tooth extraction.
Drinking hot beverages is one activity that can cause dry socket. Not only that, but you are likely to burn your mouth or spill them on yourself and burn yourself elsewhere while you’re numb. Avoid drinking hot coffees and teas while your mouth heals. Instead, try room-temperature versions of the drinks. Iced versions are OK, but they might trigger sensitivity.
What to Drink after Wisdom Teeth Removal
For many people, eliminating the above drinks might make them wonder what they can drink after wisdom teeth extraction. There are many options, such as milk, vegetable juice, or fruit juice. Uncarbonated sports drinks, like Gatorade or Powerade, not only hydrate, but provide nutrients you might be getting less of while you’re not eating a full diet. Another good source of nutrients is a room-temperature broth, especially a bone broth that includes the materials your body needs to rebuild the bone at the extraction sites.
And, of course, don’t forget water: the best hydrator available.
Choose Foods Wisely
For the first 24 hours after your extraction, it is important to drink water. As far as foods go during this period, it is best to avoid eating hard foods that could become trapped in the extraction site. Cold foods like yogurt and applesauce provide needed nutrition while offering cooling relief to inflamed and swollen tissue. Patients may also choose to eat ice cream for added relief. But be aware that cold foods can sometimes trigger sensitivity, especially as your surgery sites are healing. For more savory choices, warm (not hot) soup is a good choice.
Over the following few days, you can introduce semi-solid foods to your diet. Pancakes and scrambled eggs would make a better breakfast choice than cereal or chewy bacon. You may also consider cooking up some fish, boiling pasta, mashing potatoes, or preparing a bean burrito. Make sure that all foods have cool-down time before eating them. Eating foods rich in protein and vitamin C is also highly recommended, so try having some hummus for a snack, or drinking fruit smoothies without a straw.
Keeping your mouth clean can help prevent infections. After the first 24 hours, it is safe to rinse gently with warm salt water. Keep in mind that vigorous rinsing may dislodge the blood clot. Brushing your teeth should still happen in the days after your surgery as well, but avoid the healing tissue toward the back of your mouth.
To learn more about wisdom tooth extractions and subsequent care, please call (918) 528-3330 to make an appointment today.