Wisdom teeth removal is one of the most common dental procedures that are carried out in the U.S. Millions of people have their wisdom teeth removed each year, making it a routine procedure for many dental surgeons. Many people dread having their wisdom teeth removed though. While having dental work done is never going to be a fun experience, it doesn’t have to be horrible either. If you are having your wisdom teeth removed soon, here are a few things you can do to make the experience as comfortable as possible.
Choose the Right Dentist
Don’t just choose any dentist to have your wisdom teeth extraction performed, but find one that you feel comfortable with. If your regular dentist doesn’t perform wisdom teeth extraction, ask him or her for a recommendation. Also ask friends and family if they can recommend a dentist they have had a good experience with. Go talk to different dentists until you find one you feel completely comfortable with.
Before your procedure inform yourself about what exactly the wisdom teeth removal procedure will involve. Do this by asking the dentist or dental surgeon that will perform the procedure about the different steps involved in the extraction. Ask them for as much detail as you want to know.
Try not to stress before your appointment. If you have a fear of the dentist, try to relax using relaxation techniques before the procedure or take your mind off it by watching a funny movie or reading a good book. Often full anesthesia will be used for the procedure in which case you won’t even remember a thing about it. In other cases local anesthesia will be used, but you will likely get nitrous oxide administered, which will help you stay calm and relaxed during the procedure. Discuss with your dentist beforehand what he or she believes is the best way to go about it and if you suffer from dental anxiety, make sure to tell your dentist about it.
Take the Provided Medication and Follow Instructions
If your dentist prescribes painkillers and other medication to use after the procedure, take these as instructed. You may not feel pain immediately after the procedure because you are still sedated, but taking pain medicine on time will help prevent the pain from suddenly surfacing when the sedation wears out.
You’ll also be instructed to use cold compresses to alleviate the swelling. The pain you’ll experience after wisdom teeth removal is generally not that bad. In most cases there will be some uncomfortable pain for a few hours up to a day after which it should subside. Just take the pain medication as instructed and you should be fine.
Avoid Hot Drinks or Foods
Don’t consume hot drinks or foods for at least a few days after the procedure and also avoid foods that require a lot of chewing. Cool drinks and cool, liquid foods are the way to go during the first days after the procedure.
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Zane Schwarzlose is a writer at Lakeway Cosmetic Dentistry, an Austin dental office. Zane is glad his wisdom teeth are long gone.