• Dental Phobia Support

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Post-extractions - still scared

B

BlueChariot

Junior member
Joined
Dec 9, 2007
Messages
1
I have been reading this forum for the past several weeks. I have had a dental phobia for several years, largely based around my wisdom teeth. As soon as the third molars showed up on x-rays, I stopped going to the dentist for fear of being told they had to be removed. It had been a good six years or so when my fiance suggested I go to the dentist for a routine cleaning prior to our wedding (June 2008). Of course everything I had feared was confirmed...I was told I had beautiful teeth, except that my wisdoms had to be removed.

Well to make a long story short, I completely freaked out, had battles with my insurance company, wound up having to go to an oral surgery that I wasn't too pleased with, and had all four wisdom teeth removed this past Thursday morning.

Today I am still severely swollen, my jaw is stiff as a board, and the left lower side of my mouth and lip are numb (I was told this I had a higher probability of nerve damage given the close proximity of the impacted tooth the nerve). I was taken my pain meds as prescribed, but am tired of feeling like a zombie. I'd really like some real food, but even when I suggest something as simple as oatmeal, my fiance won't give it to me because he says it will get stuck in my stitches. So I've pretty much been on an all liquid diet, still feel like crap, and am thinking this whole thing was not worth it (my wisdom teeth were not bothering me in the slightest prior to their removal).

I therefore have several questions:

1. When I can I start eating solid food?
2. When can I expect my jaw will loosen up a bit so that I can brush my teeth and eat like a normal person?
3. Is there danger of dry-socket if all four of my "sockets" have been sutured?
4. When should I expect my face to look less like a balloon and more like me? (Yes, I iced the area constantly for the first 48 hours post-op)

Please tell me this will all be behind me sometime soon!!!!!!!
 
archaeodani2

archaeodani2

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 24, 2007
Messages
346
Location
Arizona, USA
CONGRATULATIONS on your upcoming wedding

I gather you are only 2-2.5 days out from having the extractions done? ( thurs - sun??)

I had regular molars extracted, and I felt the same as you =
**gently move your jaw around - in circles, as if you are eating, etc - work slowly on getting your mouth open further and further
**rinse with warm saltwater - my dentist suggested a teaspoon to a cup of water as warm as possible - it encourages healing, and makes the area feel better
** I'd give it another day, personally, before eating - my sutures werent' affected at all 3-4 days after surgery & that was when I felt OK to eat "real food" = definitely check with the dental staff - they can let you know, too
**brushing was a *$%(* when I had my extractions - constant worry over harming the area. I got passed that by putting a little toothpaste on a piece of gauze wrapped around my finger, to get to the teeth next to the surgery site - cleaned them, made my mouth feel better, which in turn made me feel better.

I was always told that sutures significantly reduce the danger of drysocket - check with the dental staff, but if I remember correctly you are "out of danger" about 5 days after, even with sutures
 
Zzzdentist

Zzzdentist

Well-known member
Verified dentist
Joined
Oct 11, 2007
Messages
1,106
Location
Having a little bit of Gorgonzola with crackers!
Today I am still severely swollen, my jaw is stiff as a board, and the left lower side of my mouth and lip are numb (I was told this I had a higher probability of nerve damage given the close proximity of the impacted tooth the nerve).

I'm concerned about the lingering numbness, but given the circumstances, you may be experiencing some parasthesia. Hopefully the feeling will return with time as things heal up.

1. When I can I start eating solid food?

You should be able to eat soups and softer foods that require minimal chewing. You don't want to stick to a liquid diet unless it's one of those meal replacement energy drinks like Ensure or equivalent. Your body requires nutrients to heal and recover from the surgery. As long as you're not actively jamming food into the socket areas, most things shouldn't be a problem including oatmeal.

2. When can I expect my jaw will loosen up a bit so that I can brush my teeth and eat like a normal person?

The jaw will feel tight (Merry Trismus!)
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for about a half a week to a week or so. Closer to a week or a week and a half things should be returning to normal. Do your best to brush the areas away from the sockets as best as possible. Don't worry too much about missing a few areas.

3. Is there danger of dry-socket if all four of my "sockets" have been sutured?

I find that there's no rhyme or reason to who gets dry sockets or which extraction areas do. It depends on the person, the extraction, and the oral bacteria. I've seen sutured sockets develop dry socket as well as non sutured ones. Sorry, I don't have any statistics available regarding that. Usually if you are careful not to rinse too aggressively in order to prevent disturbing the blood clot, that might help. Salt water rinses might help as well.

4. When should I expect my face to look less like a balloon and more like me? (Yes, I iced the area constantly for the first 48 hours post-op)

Swelling can last for up to a week or so.

Please tell me this will all be behind me sometime soon!!!!!!!

In two to three weeks, it'll all be a distant memory as you should be on your way to healing up.
 
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