Wisdom tooth pain can seem unbearable. Luckily, having your wisdom teeth removed can help you eliminate that pain, reduce crowding, and prevent other dental issues caused by impacted wisdom teeth that are stuck in the gums. However, you might be concerned that the discomfort you'll feel from having them extracted is equally painful. Here are some expert-recommended home remedies for wisdom tooth pain that can help after surgery.
What to Expect After Wisdom Tooth Removal
My daughter's orthodontist recently advised that she will need to have at least two of her wisdom teeth removed. The news had me flashing back to my own wisdom teeth surgery and the pain and misery I felt after. I'm nervous about my daughter experiencing the same pain I felt. However, with the knowledge I gained after speaking to expert Dr. Anu Isaac of Coral Dental Care, I feel confident that I'll be able to manage my daughter's discomfort effectively with natural remedies for wisdom tooth pain.
Whether you have impacted wisdom teeth or those pesky molars have yet to break through your gumline, they can cause issues that require removal. The recovery period after wisdom tooth surgery may include some pain, swelling, and bleeding. As Dr. Isaac explains, pain can last from three to four days or up to a week. "It could be longer if it is a traumatic extraction or if there is infection after the extraction or a dry socket," she says.
While most recoveries will be smooth, there are some signs to look out for that indicate you need to contact your dentist. If you experience severe pain or pain that persists beyond a week, you should contact your dentist's office, Dr. Isaac says. Other signs of concern include bleeding that lasts more than a few hours after the extraction, swelling that persists beyond two or three days, fever, a bad taste in the mouth that won't go away even after rinsing, and pus discharge.
Home Remedies for Wisdom Tooth Pain
While some discomfort is inevitable with a major dental procedure, that doesn't mean you have to spend days being miserable. Dr. Isaac shared several natural home remedies to help with pain, swelling, and bleeding after an extraction.
1. Get the Ice Packs Ready
Swelling in your face is a normal reaction after wisdom tooth surgery. Icing your cheek or jaw area can help to minimize swelling and the pain that comes with it. Dr. Isaac suggests using an ice pack, a zip-top bag filled with ice chips, or a bag of frozen peas or corn.
2. Try Tea Bags
A tea bag can help to stop the bleeding if it persists beyond the first two hours. Place a tea bag moistened with water over the extraction socket and bite down on it for five minutes. The tannic acid in the tea helps to form the blood clot, Dr. Isaac explains.
3. Use a Saltwater Rinse
You can use a warm saltwater rinse twenty-four hours after your extraction. Dr. Isaac explains that the warmth increases the blood supply to the area to initiate faster healing, while the saltwater reduces inflammation.
4. Stick to a Soft Food Diet
Eat cold, soft foods like ice cream, yogurt, and popsicles the day of the removal. Cold causes vasoconstriction, which reduces bleeding, Dr. Isaac says. The day after the extraction, she recommends a warm, soft diet. This includes foods like scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, and warm soup. Any food that is easy to swallow and doesn't require chewing will help you or your child avoid pain and irritation.
5. Don't Drink with Straws
Keeping the blood clot in place is vital to stopping the bleeding. During the first few hours after the extraction, avoid sucking on a straw or spitting. As Dr. Isaac explains, both of these actions can dislodge the blood clot and initiate bleeding.
6. Avoid Exercise
You likely won't feel up to a workout after your wisdom teeth surgery. Still, even if you get a surge of energy, it's best to avoid any strenuous activity, such as running or lifting weights, for the first few hours after extraction. That can dislodge the blood clot and lead to more bleeding.
7. Keep Your Head Elevated
Getting a good night's sleep is essential to recovery, but it can be hard to rest if you're uncomfortable. Raising your head with an extra pillow when laying down can help to reduce discomfort, as well as eliminate the risk of choking from saliva and blood pooling while you sleep.
Simple home remedies can go a long way to alleviate pain, swelling, and discomfort. At the end of the day, my wisdom tooth surgery was successful, and it helped me maintain my oral health. I know the same will be true for my daughter's experience to come. Armed with these wise tips on natural home care, I have no fear.
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Why It's Good
Some discomfort is normal after having your wisdom teeth removed, but that doesn't mean you have to suffer through it. There are several home remedies for wisdom tooth pain after extraction that can help to keep you comfortable while your mouth recovers.