Grains of Wisdom From Losing My Wisdoms

When you tell people that you’re getting your wisdom teeth pulled you’re bound to hear a few horror stories. Everyone is more than happy to regale you with a long and painful tale about that time eight years ago when they had theirs out. They like to conclude by saying it was one of  the worst weekends of their life. 

However, I’m pleased to report that, although oral surgery can be accompanied by some degree of discomfort, it often isn’t as gruesome and nightmarish as everyone says. I opted to use the local anesthetic when I had my wisdom teeth removed, meaning that I was awake for the procedure and able to drive myself home afterward. Here are some snippets of wisdom I learned through the process.

  1. Don’t use google images! You will find pages and pages of worst case scenarios that you’re bound to lose sleep over. Instead look up personal stories and reviews of the procedure. There are plenty of people online who are happy to share their tips and tricks for preparing for and recovering from having your wisdom teeth removed.
  2. Be a good patient. You will likely be instructed to take a couple of prescriptions before your appointment. Make sure to read all directions for these and take them as instructed. After the procedure you may also be prescribed Ibuprofen or Tylenol to help manage your pain. Make sure to fill these before the numbing wears off. 
  3. Stock up on liquids and soft foods and consider purchasing kid’s utensils. You will be amazed at how little you can open your mouth the day after the procedure. Broths, apple sauce, yogurt, and a lot of ice cream were go to’s for me. I also made sure to have some mac and cheese on hand which I started to eat on the second day. 
  4. Don’t be a hero. If you are prescribed pain killers don’t be afraid to take them. It’s much easier to manage your pain before it becomes an issue. Your jaw will probably be sore for the better part of two weeks after the procedure. However, in my case there was very little pain after the procedure. The worst part was when the local anesthetic was injected into various points in my mouth. Fair warning, that will probably pinch a bit. 
  5. Relax. Let yourself rest and heal up. It’s best to schedule your wisdom teeth extraction for a Friday in order to allow maximum recovery time before returning to work on Monday. Don’t stress over the weekend about all the chores you haven’t done or all the projects waiting for you at work. Settle in for a comfy weekend of books and Netflix. 

When it comes to having your wisdom teeth removed, it’s generally best not to believe everything you hear or at least to take it with a grain of salt. My procedure was quick and painless, lasting only about 15 minutes after numbing in the chair for a while. I was able to drive myself home and go about my business mostly as usual although I did take it easy for a few days. Please feel free to share your tips or stories. 


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