Preparing for Wisdom Teeth Removal

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January 3, 2016
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Preparing for Wisdom Teeth Removal

The third molars are a set of four teeth that grow in the very back of your mouth, and often referred to as “wisdom teeth”. They are not present in everyone’s mouth—some people have only one, two, or three, while others have none—but they are unnecessary for most adults and thus are often recommended for removal. These extractions can be a simple process if the teeth have come through the gums, but it can also be difficult if they have become impacted or infected. Preparing for removal is important to have the fastest possible recovery.

Ask Lots of Questions

Prior to scheduling your wisdom teeth removal surgery, be sure you ask plenty of questions so you fully understand the process. Some common questions you want answered might include:

  • How many teeth will be removed?
  • Will it be general anesthetic, or just a local anesthetic (numbing)?
  • How long is the process?
  • Will it be done in the dental office or another facility such as a hospital?
  • How long is the recovery?

Prepare Your Body and Mouth

Your dentist will likely have some instructions about the day of the surgery, and it’s important that you follow these in detail. For patients going under general anesthesia, remember not to eat or drink anything for the correct number of hours prior to the procedure, and be sure to make arrangements for a ride home since you will be unable to drive. Do not smoke or use tobacco prior to or after your surgery, and talk to your dentist about any prescriptions that you should stop before surgery.

After the Procedure

As with any surgery, wisdom teeth removal will likely cause significant pain after the procedure is over, so be sure you have a prescription for pain medication and an ice pack to help reduce the swelling. You may also want some over-the-counter medication for when the pain is lower and you don’t need the prescription strength meds.

You will also want to make arrangements in advance to have a place where you can rest at home, and if possible, someone to stay with you, since anesthesia can take up to 24 hours to wear off completely. Schedule the surgery at a time when you either have vacation time from work or school, or when you can take a few days off. Finally, be sure you have some soft foods around and plenty of liquids, as you won’t be able to eat regular food for a few days.

Wisdom teeth removal in Utah is a common procedure, and besides a little bit of pain and perhaps some minor inconvenience, it’s a quick process to remove teeth that might otherwise cause infections and other issues in your mouth.