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Wisdom Removal--All 4 on Anesthesia



Junior member
Jan 7, 2023
Howdy! After weeks of dreading this procedure and reading just about every story on this forum, watching so many vlogs, and reading countless advice articles, I'm happy to say that I survived my wisdom teeth removal this morning. Did I cry? Yes. Was it the most pleasant experience ever? Nope. But 8 hours out from surgery, I'm feeling okay.

Let me start by saying that I developed an extreme fear of the dentist and avoided going for 10 years. I worked up the courage last winter and ended up with two cavities getting filled and root canal. Let me just say, the root canal (while also survivable!!) was less pleasant than the wisdom teeth, because I was awake.

Let's start with yesterday. I had pretty bad anxiety all day, upset stomach, difficulty eating, etc, but I forced myself to eat a healthy meal since I had to fast from midnight on. I also drank a lot of water. And I did NOT sleep well. In retrospect, I wish I'd taken melatonin, because laying awake all night highly anxious was no fun. I did yoga this morning and walked my dogs and that helped to calm my nerves a little.

My appointment was schedueled for 10:30 AM and my sweet BF accompanied me. We hit bad traffic on the way which made me 5 minutes late (I called the office) and resulted in a lot of stress tears from me... I REALLY didn't want to reschedule.

At the office I was checked in, x-rayed, and then sent back while a flurry of nurses put on the blood pressure cuff, some monitoring clamps on my wrists, and an O2 monitor on my finger. They also put on O2/laughing gas on my face--I actually got to keep my glasses on because they helped hold the mask in place, LOL. Wasn't expecting that.

My consultation was rolled into my appointment, so they were giving my BF instructions and answering my questions and asking for my pharmacy all at once. I got overwhelmed and cried again.

Then my surgeon came in and he was so nice!! I told him I was nervous and he was super upbeat, joked around, gave a very thorough overview of the procedure, and answered my questions. I calmed down a lot and was feeling pretty ready to get it over with.

Then the IV... listen, this was the worst part. They had to poke me 5 times before finding suitable vein. The nurses were really sweet and I kept apologizing for crying (because it hurt... but again, survivable). And the the surgeon came in, checked how I was doing, hooked up the IV. And I was out. OUT!! I didn't even get asked to count down.

Waking up was disorienting--the surgeon told me to stop hyperventilating (I guess because of my disorientation, I started to breathe fast) and told me we were done. This part was surprising--I expected to be given time to wake up, but after they unhooked me from everything, a nurse gave me my stuff and walked me out.

One unexpected thing--apparently I have a hole to my sinuses on one tooth. The surgeon packed it and I don't have to have a follow up appointment, but I can't blow my nose for two weeks and have to be a little more cautious in the healing process. Bummer, but fingers crossed it heals fine.

So... going home, I felt out of it and tired, but not loopy. I drooled so much... I brought some paper towels from home and I HIGHLY recommend this. It was hard to swallow with the numbness/gauze and I did get some drool/blood on my shirt and coat. So just bring paper towels and wear old clothes. In fact, paper towels were my friends all afternoon.

Now... the bleeding took a long time to stop. Between that and the numbness, it was really hard to swallow my pills. It took a lot of tries. This became easier throughout the day as the numbness wore off.

It took about 5 hours for my bleeding to mostly stop. This is on the long side, but I know a little blood is normal for 24 hours so eventually I said "good enough" and drank water and ate applesauce and ice cream. I felt sooo much better with food in my stomach, but more tired.

My surgeon advised me to take 3 ibuprofen and 2 tylonel every 5 hours, regardless of pain, for 3 days. My tylonel is slightly higher than their recommended dose so I've just taken 1 each time. I'm also on an antibiotic 3x a day and I have a stronger pain med that I was told not to take unless I'm in a lot of pain. Mouthwash starts tomorrow. I have had zero pain! A little discomfort, but my swelling came down quickly and the numbness has worn off--still no pain :). I've heard day 2 is the worst so... we'll see, but IMO, the bleeding/drooling is probably less pleasant than any soreness. But we'll see.

Here's my TLDR/tips and tricks

1: Go for anesthesia!! Seriously, even if the idea freaks you out, it's sooo nice to be totally out for the whole deal. A blink and you're done!
2. Don't be afraid to call your doctor with question after you get home! My BF called 3 times and the office was super willing to answer questions.
3. Bring some kind of towel for the car ride home!
4. Wear comfy clothes that you don't care about. I wore sweatpants, a loose t shirt, and a pullover that I took off during surgery.
5. Bring a list of questions!! Your surgeon/the nurses should be willing and able to answer everything, and it's really reassuring to have a professional answer your questions.
6. My procedure lasted about 1.5 hours, from arrival to leaving.
7. Do something nice for your future self and set up a station with all your medicines, supplies, etc before you go to your appointment. Keep all medicines and instructions neatly in one place.
8. Buy extra gauze! They didn't give me nearly enough. I bought the square shapped gauze from CVS
9. CVS also sells cold compresses that are so much more comfy than ice IMO! They get pretty cold in the freezer but don't freeze solid, so you can bend them to shape to your jaw.

That's all I can think of, but if you have questions, feel free to ask. Most of all: you can do this!! I am such a wimp, and I cried, and babbled, but I did it. It is SUCH a relief to be done. Now I get to sit around and focus on healing. My dentist said I should be back to basically normal by Monday, but to take it easy for a week. Luckily, I WFH so I can continue to relax next week.

I'll try to remember to update each day--maybe just with what I'm eating and how I'm feeling. Thanks to this forum, I continue to conquer my dental fears!

Well done!
Day 2 update:
Felt fine the rest of the night, stayed up until 11 PM to take another round of medicine before bed. I actually wasn't that tired and had some trouble sleeping (I'm not used to sleeping on my back, semi-upright), but managed about 7 hours with some periods of being awake. The only pain I had overnight was a headache, no jaw soreness at all.
Feeling good today--no pain, no swelling, no bruising. This morning I had a protein shake and some yogurt, and I just had half an avocado, mashed, and some applesauce for lunch. Planning on ricotta cheese and more yogurt for dinner... or maybe some soup.
Recovery is going so much better than I expected! I started the mouthwash/salt rinse/brushing teeth again today and nothing's been difficult so far. Here's hoping that it all continues smoothly.
Day 3 update:
Doing well!! I fell asleep before taking my next round of pain meds last night, but slept for about 6 hours before I woke up with moderate pain in my left jaw. I took my pills, waited 30 minutes, and was back asleep.
Today's been pretty smooth sailing. The antibiotic has been the worst part--my stomach is upset and I'm pretty nauseous at the thought of most foods, although less so than yesterday. My mom very kindly brought me homemade mashed potatoes, which I devoured (more leftover in the fridge, though!). And I've been eating smoothies, although I know I'm supposed to avoid seeds.
Otherwise, no pain when I've kept up with my meds schedule. I even ventured out today and walked my dog around the block. I'm still anxious about following all my instructions, but it becomes easier each day.
I hope these updates help--overall, I'm just feeling so relieved that the surgery I dreaded is over and I'm in the healing process. I'm not sure I'll remember to keep updating each day, but I'll try to check back ~1 week post-surgery with another update!
Nice! Well done 🙂
I keep forgetting to update! Here's quick review of my last week:

I feel like I really turned a corner and started feelimg like myself again on day 6 after surgery, which was also the day I started using the syringe to clean the lower holes. I was really worried about this but it's really not bad!! It has never once been painful--sometimes it tickles, and that's usually a sign that I've done enough. I do it 3x a day and it's super easy.

I'm done with antibiotics and off the pain meds routine. I did have some stiffness/soreness that usually occured mid-afternoon and mid-night (like 2 AM, very inconveniently). When this happened, I'd pop a few Advil and be back to sleep in 30 minutes. No biggie.

At this point, 12 days post-surgery, I have zero pain (and haven't for a few days).

BUT... I am having a small complication with my upper right site. As I mentioned in the first post, I was told I had a hole on one side and given some extra instructions. On Sunday (two days ago), I felt a stitch come out, and later that day realized I could feel air moving through that part of my mouth--super weird! I also had some drainage. I called my surgeon yesterday and they said that while it should close on its own in time, they want me to come for a follow-up on Friday so they can look at it.

Although the hole is a super weird sensation, thankfully, it isn't painful or bleeding. I'll try to remember to update after Friday in case anyone is curious or also dealing with this. All things considered, I'm doing just fine, so hopefully this will resolve on its own.

It's been nice to eat things like pasta, cake, and bread again, but I miss popcorn!