Looking for advice after I get my wisdom teeth pulled next week.

I knew it would happen eventually since everyone in my family has had their’s removed. I know it is supposedly excrutiating painful so I am going to go the route of the wimp and get as many meds as I can get. To make this a more enjoyable experience out of something that is supposedly completely horrible.

So what should I ask my dentist to knock me up with (besides his baby… he is cute) to leave me blissfully happy while I recover?

I had 4 yanked out at once a few years back. It was a very pleasant experience. I was put totally under, and it was done in the blink of an eye. Just don’t get local anesthesia, because you’ll be awake whilst they saw, chisel, and pry chunks of tooth from your tender skull.


freeze small cups of ice- e.g. dixie cups so that you can ice your face afterwards.

Can’t overstate the importance of this. gets rid of the swelling

I used a local anasthetic, and was none the worse for the wear. I felt no pain, and experienced only a mild ache for a few days afterward. The operation was done in 30 minutes. I closed my eyes and relaxed. Eventually, I opened them, noticed the doctor fiddling with som things on his little tray, and asked when he was going to start (though it was slurred pretty badly from the meds). He notified me that he was simply cleaning up.

And that was that. Didn’t even need some tylenol later.

mine were removed in 1974 but reading the OP brought it all back like it was yesterday.

the memories…

let me begin by saying i am told my situation is not how it usually ends up but a rather extreme situation… i’m not so convinced. what i’ve seen it looks like a lot of people have gone through similiar situations, but perhaps this thread will shed more light on that.

all 4 were impacted and were removed the same time. the oral sergeon must have been a butcher. he couldn’t get me to sleep and ended up giving me tons of drugs before i finally dozed off for a while. it took forever!

months later i still woke up to blood on my pillowcase and my senor pictures look like i’m a chipmonk because of the swelling.

my suggestions… check out your oral sergeon and don’t make any plans for a couple days. i tried to go to work after the sergery but didn’t succeed. think seriously about frozen yogert or ice cream.

good luck to you and let us know how it goes.

I got mine out about 10 years ago, and it really wasn’t that bad. Here’s my advice…

  1. Get knocked out.
    You’ve got that covered. Good

  2. Have someone to drive you home.
    I think this is required when you get General Anesthesia, anyhow

  3. If they give you pain meds, don’t take any until you feel better, if you can help it.
    That’s general tongue-in-cheek advice, BTW

  4. Have a box of nice, fresh Tea Bags ready. Buy them the day before, if not sooner. Get Salada™ if you can find it - it’s the best. When you get home from the Dentist’s Ofice on your Big Day, take a pain med or two, get those Tea Bags nice and wet with cold water, then squeeze the water out as much as you can, and cram them into your pie hole. Get 'em as far back as you can manage, but BE CAREFUL!!! You don’t want to tear your stitches out! Apply new Tea Bags every hour or so, depending on how much you’re bleeding. The Tea Bags will absorb the blood that will undoubtedly be seeping/flowing/flooding into your mouth from the gaping holes the Dentist has made.
    Possibly Unnecessary Warning! Don’t go to bed with Tea Bags in your mouth!

  5. Buy some nice soft, squishy food available for at least three days. You’ll most likely not want to chew anything.
    I lived on scrambled eggs and Kraft Mac & Cheeze for three days

Good luck!


Pudding. My best advice is pudding.

The day of the surgery, I couldn’t really feel my lips, and couldn’t eat at all. The only thing I was able to eat was pudding/jello type foods. I could spoon it in, flip the spoon upside down. Then use my bottom lip to scrape the spoon clean. Pudding was ideal because it would stick to the spoon, allowing me to not be dumping hot soup or something exceedingly cold on my unsuspecting tongue.

I would also suggest having them knock you out. Much nicer that way. I woke up in the middle of mine, and started to freak out, because I thought if I’m waking up, I must be starting to wear off. But I realized I couldn’t really feel anything, so I just went back to sleep.

I had four wisdom teeth removed in one operation.

I was given a tablet to take an hour prior to my appointment to relax me (I don’t remember the name of the drug).

Got the novacaine. Got the nitrous oxide.

No pain. No swelling. A small amount of blood in my mouth after I went home and slept for four hours.

Took a few Tylenol III tablets that day for a bit of throbing.

All in all, it was an easy procedure. Hope your experience is as good.

Cream of wheat too, but not too hot.

That’s the experience most of my friends had, so it probably won’t be a big deal. I had all four out several years ago and was out for a couple days and off solid food for a week. I was a special case, though. They took a biopsy of a growth in my cheek while they were in there (just a hemangioma) and sewed my cheek down to the void in my gums to let it heal. I was doped up in bed for a couple days. I’m with Winston on the mac & cheese, I also had a lot of lime jello. My mom found a baby foodmill in the attic and used it to mush up the mac, assorted fruits, whatever else I wanted but couldn’t chew. It worked out really well. Most likely you’ll be fine, but it’s always good to be prepared. As for meds, I highly recommend morphine or it’s lesser cousin codeine (caution: try to avoid prolonged usage of these as they are habit-forming drugs)


Another one here that had all 4 removed at the same time. Aged 16, Dr Slaughter (loved that guy!).

Was knocked out (boy was this a good thing cos they had to dig deep). Woke up a bit later. Few painkillers to last me a few days. Sent home.

Not too bad - better than first car wreck actually…

Also strongly agree with getting lots of soft foods in before hand. They should be eaten cold/coolish as heat will encourage bleeding. Puddings, jello, quiche, yoghurts, rice, etc.

Good luck with your procedure.


I won’t have to worry about driving. I figure I will be groggy but I will be taking the metro anyway.

The tea bad thing sounds dirty. :slight_smile: I guess I will have to try it just to tell my friends I went teabagging.

Morphine or Codeine… I wonder if I will have problems getting the dentist to prescribe those to me. I just want to lie back and feel like I am in Happy Happy Land for a few days and then go back to work.

My advice: drugs are good for the day of the surgery; the more, the better. (I tried not to take anything stronger than Tylenol after the first day or two, but it was hard, because mine were also impacted and hurt like hell.)

Mushy food is also good. Your mouth may be more sensitive to temperature than usual, so lukewarm is also good.

Also, people react differently to oral surgery. The first time, I was OK in a couple of days. The second time, I felt like crap and ended up missing a week of work. So don’t make any big plans for right afterward if you can help it. (Of course, I had stitches that made it difficult to open my mouth, and a court interpreter who can’t open her mouth isn’t terribly useful. YMMV.)

My fiance had 5 taken out a couple of years ago. Extra wisdom tooth was on the upper left(?) and they had to go digging for it.
None of the other 4 were erupted, so I guess they kinda had to go digging for all of them.

When I picked him up after the surgery I thought he had gauze stuffed in his cheeks, but when we got home and he looked around for it to pull it out, it turne dout that was just the swelling.
He continued to swell for another 2 days. The worst was the 3rd day, when his neck was bigger than his head. He said the pain wasn’t that bad as longa s he kept up with the Ibuprofen and the Percoset. His take on the drugs was that the Ibuprofen killed most of the pain and the Percoset made him not care about the pain that was remaining.

However, if they give you anything that you’re supposed to take on a full stomach - listen to them! The second day, he decided he was ready to try a percoset because the pain was worse than the first day. He couldn’t open his mouth more than a couple of centimeters, so eating had been iffy. He got as much soup and juice in him as he could, then took a pill. It came up about 15 minutes later. He says most of it came out his nose since he couldn’t open his mouth much. Ick!

Make sure you have lots of non-chunky soups and juices on hand, and my fiance lived on Ensure. Not sure where you’re located, so I don’t know if the brand “Ensure” means anything - it’s a nutrition drink that old people and sick people drink. It’s sweet, packed full of calories and vitamins and stuff. Comes in several flavors, like chicocalte, vanilla. If you’re not in the US, I’m sure you have an equivalent product wherever you are.

Mashed potatoes are good once you’ve graduated from a liquid diet. He also liked overcooked noodles at that point.

He was out of work a whole week, and he’s not one to complain or malinger.

Remember - no straws! Don’t do anything to endanger those clots!

French Vanilla Slim-Fast is equally good.

When I had my four wisdom teeth out, I was so miserable. The gauze triggered my gag reflex, so I spent a good deal of time puking and crying.

I would strongly suggest you have a supply of Emetrol, an anti-nausea liquid on hand. They gave me Ultram for the pain, which made me very nauseated.

I endorse the teabag idea. They’re even better if you chill them in the refrigerator for a while before putting them in your mouth. I kept a bowl of wet, chilled teabags in the fridge so that I had a steady supply of cold ones. The cold is comforting and helps with the swelling, and I’ve read somewhere that the tannic acid in tea does something good for your wounded gums. If nothing else, it feels good.

I’m really quite suprised at the range of reactions among people here.

I don’t recall having any special dietary needs other than soup and soft foods for about two days.

Perhaps the fact that mine were erupted and easy to grab hold of made the difference. Could be there is less swelling and faster healing of the gums when they don’t have to cut the gums and go digging.

BTW, are there any dentists on the SDMB? Maybe they could help answer your questions.

All of my teeth are crowns, and before they started installing them, I decided to get my four wisdom teeth and my four rear molars removed (funny, I don’t even miss them now). I figured that having eight teeth removed at once would be painful, but I don’t remember a thing about the operation, just riding home.
I had some mild discomfort due to swelling, which was easily controlled with an icepack. I took my meds at the slightest sign of pain, and I was not the least bit uncomfortable for my three day vacation. I spent most of my time on the couch eating jello and pasta. Very relaxing, and if I could do it again, I would!

I had mine pulled, with nitrous oxide and LOTS of novacaine. I staggered like a drunk. The only pain I had was from openeing my jaw so much(and from infection, but that’s because I was allergic to the tylenol-codeine drug they prescribed afterwards).

And mine were compacted so they did a lot of digging and scraping.

Get a plastic syringe, the kind with no needle attached. Use that to direct a stream of water into the craters where the teeth used to be; this flushes out bits of food and keeps the wound nice and clean, so it heals faster.