8 Tips On How To Survive Wisdom Tooth Extraction

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Flowers by Olivia Bossert Now I know what you're thinking, why on earth are you covering a topic as strange and obscure as wisdom teeth? Well, my friends, let me tell you why: they've been the bane of my life for the past two years. It all began when I jinxed myself while talking to my boyfriend: "Wisdom teeth suck." said Tom. "No they don't, they're fine. Mine have never caused me any problems." I said.

And just like that, I was screwed.

First, there was pain. A LOT of pain. Then an infection. Then another. And another. And before I knew it, I was being signed up for surgery to get them removed.

The surgery itself was totally fine and absolutely painless; I was put to sleep and when I woke up, they were gone. I felt a bit drowsy, but within 45 minutes I was up on my feet and headed to the car. I was told to try and eat something as soon as I got home, but I was so numb from the local anaesthetic that I couldn't use my mouth... smoothie time! I blended up a banana in coconut milk and drank it: immediate energy, it tasted great, filled me up, and easy the easiest thing I could find to consume. Win win!

The next few days were spent basically in one place: in my living room, on my sofa. I was pretty out of it for a few days, but initially, there was no pain from the extraction. It wasn't until Sunday night, when I was woken up by excruciating pain that I knew something was up. I didn't sleep all night, and booked myself into the dentist the next morning. Immediately, he knew what was wrong: Dry Sockets. I won't go into a lot of detail, but essentially, where my teeth once were, there were now two holes which had gotten infected. Not only that, but the gum surrounding them had also got infected! YAY FOR ME! I asked the dentist how this could have happened, as I'd been so careful with my salt water rinses, and brushed my teeth very gently; "It's just really bad luck." Typical. To cut a long story short, I took the antibiotics, took it easy, and I'm now almost 100% better.

Without further ado, here are my top tips for surviving wisdom tooth extraction:

  1. Stock up on porridge, mashed potato, and soup. If you're really organised, make your own batches of soup and freeze them. My tummy definitely suffered while I was soup bound because I hadn't prepared enough, and all store bought soups contain either onions or lentils, ie: Low FODMAP hell.
  2. Rest! I can't stress enough how helpful it was for me that I just let myself rest.
  3. Take the pain killers before they wear off. Don't tell yourself you're fine. Just take them!
  4. Do warm salt water rinses frequently. And when I say frequently, I mean every time you've eaten. It soothes and really helps to clean the areas you can't get to.
  5. Resist the urge to stick your tongue in the holes. They're trying to heal!
  6. Don't use mouthwash: it burns and the alcohol in (most) of them will just irritate the wounds.
  7. If you start to notice your pain getting worse about 3-4 days in, call the dentist and make an appointment to get it checked out. It might be a dry socket developing (what I got!) and you want to get it seen to as soon as possible.. and the pain will go away much faster if you do :)
  8. When you feel like you can start eating solid food again, do it slowly and carefully!

So there you have it, my top tips on surviving wisdom tooth extraction. If you have any questions, or you just want to someone to talk to about this, then by all means comment or email me :)