Wisdom Teeth Removal: Preparation & Recovery Tips

man at the dentist getting his wisdom teeth removed

Wisdom teeth, also called the third molars, grow at the back of your mouth. They often come when an individual is in their teenage years between 16 and 20. But for most people, these teeth do not erupt. Read on to learn more about their removal and how to prepare and recover after the removal procedure.

Why Wisdom Teeth Removal Is Necessary

Your dentist can recommend removing wisdom teeth because the jaw cannot grow enough for your wisdom teeth to fit. As a result, they may only partially emerge. They also grow slanted and cause the rest of your teeth problems.

Most times, the third molars or wisdom teeth damage the second molars or the neighboring teeth. Hence, your dentist can recommend removing them before they cause problems.

Signs You Need Wisdom Teeth Removal

Consulting your dentist is the ideal way to know whether you need to remove your wisdom teeth. They can order dental X-rays to determine if you have third molars and if they can get impacted or not erupt. Your dental specialist can also spot potential problems through regular dental exams before you complain of any issues.

Below are common signs you may need to get your wisdom teeth extracted|:

  • Gum swelling, redness, and pain

  • Lower or upper jaw pain

  • Recurrent oral infections

  • Crowding or shifting of teeth

  • Tumors or cysts around your jawbone or impacted tooth

  • Tooth decay near your second molars


Talk to your dentist about any concerns that you may have. Tell them about your preexisting health problems. Your specialist will give instructions to follow before the procedure.

Choose a time that will allow you a few days. A predictable routine will give you enough time to heal. You will need someone to drive you back home if you plan on sedation for your procedure. You are likely to feel very sleepy during the first day. You may also need to avoid having meals on the morning of the dental appointment.

What to Expect After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

The dental office staff will move you to a resting area, where they can monitor you for some time before you go home. Expect blood clots over the extracted site. You may feel some pain and swelling.

Avoid strenuous activities so that you do not interrupt your healing process or impact the formed blood clots to cause a condition called dry socket. It exposes the bone, making the underlying nerves sensitive to cold.

Recovery Tips

Below are some tips to help you during recovery:

  • Avoid hard, spicy, crunchy, or hot foods. Eat soft ones like eggs, pasta, or soups

  • Take a lot of fluids

  • Reduce bruising and swelling by applying ice

  • On the second or third day following your procedure, put moist heat on your sore jaw muscles

  • Rinse your treated site with some warm, salty water

  • Elevate your head during the night using extra pillows

  • Take your medication as instructed by your oral surgeon or dentist

  • Call your oral surgeon or dentist if you experience infection signs and symptoms like persisting pain, swelling, or fever

Preventing the growth of wisdom teeth is impossible. However, you can always care for oral health through regular dental exams and proper hygiene to avoid dental issues.

For more about wisdom teeth removal, visit Eagle Gate Dental at our office in Salt Lake City, Utah. Call 801-781-5300 to book an appointment today.