Wisdom teeth surgery

Wisdom tooth extraction

Wisdom tooth extraction consists in removing the third molars to keep the second molars. Third molars, commonly called wisdom teeth, are often useless for chewing. It is often due to a lack of space in the mouth that we extract them.

Wisdom teeth surgery is a common procedure at Centre dentaire Serge Chaussé. Ask your dentist if preventive surgery is required.

Post-surgery care

Guidelines to follow after minor surgery

Your dentist can prescribe antibiotic medicine to prevent post-surgery infection or pain relievers. After the operation, brushing and flossing is important. You can eat and drink, but avoid alcohol, warm food and liquids as well as tobacco, since they interfere with sedative effects and the natural healing process.

Keep in mind that you need to eat well to get better. Drink lots of water (but no warm liquids) and choose a balanced diet to help your body recover soon and well.

If the discomfort persists or worsens (swelling, bleeding, nausea, vomiting or fever), please call your dentist immediately for instructions.

To relieve discomfort


You will be given local anesthetic to numb the area that will be treated. The length of time you will feel numbness will depend on the quantity of anesthetic you will have received. Be careful not to bite your cheek, lips or tongue while your mouth is numb. This should last a few hours.


Expect some discomfort after the numbness wears off. This discomfort will vary in intensity depending on the nature of the operation, your general health and activity. Most of the pain will occur on the first 24 to 48 hours and the discomfort can last up to 3 to 5 days after the surgery.

What to do:

  • Take your prescription medicine
  • Tell your dentist of any other medicine you take (to prevent drug interaction)
  • Call your dentist if the discomfort persists for more than 24 hours
  • Do not exceed the recommended drug dosage
  • Do not take alcohol with pain relievers

To stop the bleeding


The dentist will use a gauze pad on the treated area to cut down on the amount of bleeding while the blood clots. The gauze must be kept in place for an hour after leaving the dentist’s office. Press firmly on the pad with your teeth but do not chew on it.  


It is expected that the area should bleed an hour or two after the surgery. It may continue to ooze for up to 24 hours.

The mixture of blood and saliva in your mouth can give you the impression that your mouth is bleeding heavily. However, there’s no need to worry.

If you cannot stop the bleeding 8 to 10 hours after the surgery by pressing firmly on the pad, call your dentist.

Keep firm and constant pressure on the wound by putting a gauze pad over the area, and by closing your teeth firmly on the pad.

What to do:

  • Keep firm and constant pressure on the gauze pad (2x2 cm) by closing your teeth firmly on the pad. Keep the pad in place for 1 hour even if it is soaked in blood
    • Replace the gauze by a clean pad if bleeding persists
    • Keep the pressure for another hour
    • By resting, you will slow down blood flow, reduce bleeding and heal faster
    • Brush and floss your teeth as usual, but avoid the wound and use only a little bit of water
    • Call your dentist if the bleeding lasts more than 8 to 10 hours
    • Rinse your mouth with warm water only 24 hours after the surgery. Your dentist can also recommend you add 2.5 ml of salt to 222ml of warm water.
    • Repeat 4 to 5 times a day, for 3 or 4 days.


What not to do:

  • Do not chew on the gauze pad or suck on the wounded area
  • Do not rinse your mouth within the first 24 hours, even if the bleeding and soaked blood leave a bad taste in your mouth
  • Avoid hot liquids. If you want to eat soup, let it cool first. Hot liquids increase blood flow and you may start to bleed again
  • Avoid drinking alcohol and smoking. They interfere with the clotting of blood and increase the risk of infection
  • Do not perform activities that require a lot of effort within 24 hours following your surgery


To reduce swelling

Your face may swell up a little bit in the 24 hours following your operation. When the swelling goes down, some bruises may appear. Swelling can last up between 5 to 7 days and bruising, up to 10 days.

What to do:

  • Apply a cold compress on the swollen area the day after the operation (ice cubes in a towel or bag of frozen vegetables – peas should do)
  • Leave the compress for 10 minutes, 10 minutes off and start over
  • Repeat if possible for another 6 to 8 hours after the surgery
  • The day after the operation, apply heat on the swollen area (bottle of hot water or heat pad wrapped in a towel). This will help improve blood circulation and bring down swelling. Beware of skin burn.
  • Call the dentist if swelling increases after 48 hours or if it persists after 7 days


To soothe jaw fatigue

Your jaw may feel stiff and sore after the surgery and you might have trouble opening your mouth for 5 to days. That is because you have kept your mouth open for a long time during the operation.

 What to do:

  • Gently massage your jaw muscles (if they’re not too sensitive)
  • Eat food that’s easy to chew like eggs, milkshakes, juices, pasta, bananas, etc.

What not to do:

  • Do not force your mouth open
  • Do not chew gum or food that’s hard to chew

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