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What Is the Average Wisdom Tooth Recovery Time?

Recovery normally takes three to four days
Read Time: 2.5 minutes
Feb 22, 2022

Getting your wisdom teeth out is a very common dental procedure. Most adults have gone through it at some point in their lives and most likely have stories about their recovery process. These can range from pain they experienced to something silly said under the effects of anesthesia.

But if you haven’t undergone the procedure, it’s understandable to want to know what you should expect from the process to the recovery period. This guide explains the length and expectations you should have for recovering from wisdom tooth removal.

How Long Does It Take to Recover from Wisdom Teeth Removal?

On average, it takes about three to four days for someone to recover from having their wisdom teeth removed. Wisdom teeth removal is usually an outpatient process, so you can go home the same day. Anesthesia will be used, but after a while, it’ll wear off, so it’s important to plan ahead so you can manage the pain and soreness you’ll experience. If your wisdom teeth were impacted, then the recovery process might take a week to two weeks instead.

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

The wisdom teeth are molars that come in long after the rest of the adult teeth have already emerged. Usually, wisdom teeth surface sometime in the late teens or early twenties. Often, the wisdom teeth don’t come in properly because there isn’t enough room in the back of the mouth for them to do so. This can cause dental problems, so they’re often removed in order to prevent issues from arising down the road.

What Problems Can Wisdom Teeth Cause?

If wisdom teeth come in without enough room, they can become impacted. This means that they come in at an angle and push against the other molars. This can be very painful and can also have a negative impact on the other teeth around them. On top of that, wisdom teeth are more difficult to keep clean and healthy, so they’re more likely to get cavities or gum disease.

What Is the Wisdom Teeth Recovery Process Like?

Woman drinking water

It’s important to listen to your dentist’s instructions in order to make the recovery process as smooth as it possibly can be. The day after your surgery, you should be able to resume normal daily activities. However, you should still avoid anything strenuous, such as:

  • Smoking
  • Drinking through a straw
  • Spitting
  • Vigorous exercise
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine

Doing any of the above activities too soon can tear the stitches or cause a blood clot. If your wisdom teeth were impacted, your dentist may advise you to wait even longer to resume those activities.

What Can You Eat After Getting Your Wisdom Teeth Removed?

In the days following your wisdom teeth removal, your mouth will be sore and painful. It’s also important to avoid causing a blood clot or to tear the stitches. For those reasons, soft foods are a good idea. It’s essential to not eat or drink anything with a straw, however. The pressure created from the sucking process can cause problems with the recovery process.

How Can I Manage Pain During Recovery?

wisdom teeth xrays

Once the anesthesia the dentist used wears off, your mouth will most likely still be sore and painful. You can manage this pain with over-the-counter painkillers and by putting an ice pack on your jaw where the wisdom teeth were removed. Your dentist will provide additional instructions for pain management which, in some cases, may include a prescription painkiller.

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