Do all wisdom teeth extractions involve stitches? The answer is not a definitive yes since it depends on your individual case. If the incisions are deep, opting for dissolvable sutures or stitches may be done to close the area. When such is the case, aftercare becomes trickier. But fret not; if you are new to stitches after tooth extraction, we can help you take good care of them for perfect healing.
Taking Care of Wisdom Teeth Stitches
The postop period requires meticulous care for your surgical site. Good oral hygiene is the standard practice, with gradually reaching the wound site closer by an inch with your brush until the stitches naturally dissolve after a few days.
For fast-tracking the healing process, your dentist may allow you to use an antimicrobial mouthwash and prescribe salt-water rinses. It is crucial for you to follow these steps with great care on the first day after extraction to avoid dislodging the clots forming over the wound site.
Infection Prevention and Monitoring
While infections after extraction are rare, if you are not vigilant enough, they are a possibility. Your dentist will prescribe antibiotics to ward off infections, and completing its entire course, even after symptoms improve, is crucial to ensure there is no lingering bacteria. Regular inspection of your site of surgery is a good practice; for this, use a mirror to look for signs of oozing, swelling, or worsening pain during the recovery phase.
Consult Your Oral Surgeon
You can ask for specific care instructions before the surgery, tailoring advice to your case. Religiously following these instructions is the key to a successful recovery.
Dry Socket Complications
You may think that stitches eliminate the chances of developing a dry socket, but that is not true. Even with them, this potential hiccup after wisdom teeth extraction occurs in approximately 1 out of 10 cases.
Therefore, you must take good care of your mouth to avoid this from happening.
Identifying Dry Socket and Ways to Prevent It
Constant or episodic throbbing pain signals a potential dry socket, making it a necessity to take measures accordingly:
- Avoid the Use of Straws: Suction while using a straw to drink a liquid of any sort can dislodge the blood clot. Therefore, steer clear of straws for at least one week after extraction.
- Quit Smoking: Smokers are at a higher risk of developing this condition. Refrain from smoking for optimal healing and minimize tobacco intake before surgery.
- Soft Food Diet: Give your mouth a break. Start off with soft consistency foods such as applesauce and yogurt on the first day, gradually progressing to meatier options. Do not have piping hot soup, nuts, seeds, or anything crunchy or sticky.
- Medication Inquiries: There are a few medications, like oral contraceptives, that affect clot formation. Consult your dentist about potential risks associated with your specific medications.
- Proper Oral Hygiene: Maintaining a clean mouth is one of the most critical aspects of preventing dry sockets. Follow your dentist’s advice on brushing, and consider using an antibacterial mouthwash as prescribed.
By adhering to the guidelines, you can easily walk through the post-wisdom teeth extraction period smoothly, without complications. If you have any questions regarding wisdom teeth extractions or the healing period afterward, contact Dr. Mussadiq Iftikhar, DDS, MSD, a Stallard Award winner at Sair Dental Group. Feel free to get in touch at 8410 Fondren Road, Houston, TX 77074 (832) 924-2666 and 10345 Club Creek Dr, Houston, TX 77036 (281) 558-1199.