How to Prepare for Wisdom Teeth Removal

By the time you reach early adulthood, you’ve known someone who has gone through wisdom teeth removal. While most people will have them removed prior to their orthodontic treatment to straighten their smile, these are the last of your teeth to erupt- usually not appearing until your late teens or early twenties. For many patients, they emerge from your gumline just as they should, and your jaw is large enough to accommodate these new molars with no issues. But more often than not, they fail to develop correctly and become impacted, causing pain that just can’t be ignored. Wisdom teeth that have erupted incorrectly are more challenging to clean and are more likely to decay, become infected, or evolve into gum disease. 

While the thought of undergoing dental surgery to have your wisdom teeth removed can bring some anxiety and fear, Dr. Carter has many years of surgical education and experience to help you get your smile and your life back! Combined with his skilled team at Smile Studio Family Dentistry and Orthodontics, you’ll get first-class care for your smile while enjoying every minute. When it’s time for your wisdom teeth to be removed, preparing ahead of time can make a big difference in your overall recovery. Let’s go over some ways to get ready!

Know what to expect before, during, and after your surgery.

A good way to prepare is to know what to expect. During your consultation appointment, we will go over what you can expect from the surgery and your recovery afterward. This is a great time to ask any questions you might have or bring up any of your concerns. Our whole team has your best interest at heart and knows that an educated patient is more likely to have a successful surgery experience and a smooth recovery. 

Following your surgery to remove your wisdom teeth, you will likely feel drowsy and experience some minor bleeding, pain, and swelling. Be sure to follow your post-operative instructions carefully and take any pain medication or antibiotics you were prescribed. You will need someone to drive you home from your surgery, but it may be necessary to have someone stay with you after, as you will need to take it easy the first day. 

How to Prepare for Wisdom Teeth Removal

Hydrate before and soft foods after.

While you will likely be instructed to fast in the hours immediately before your wisdom teeth removal surgery, you can head off some of the issues from dehydration that are common following sedation, like postoperative nausea and vomiting, by making sure to drink plenty of water in the days leading up to your surgery. Being adequately hydrated will also ensure there are no issues starting your IV at the start of your procedure.

After your wisdom teeth are removed, eating will be more difficult until your pain and swelling subside. We recommend starting with clear liquids immediately after you get home and working your way up to soft and smooth foods like ice cream, soup, mashed potatoes, smoothies, and more. Make sure you avoid using straws and smoking during your healing period. The sucking motion can dislodge the clot that covers and protects your extraction site, leading to a painful condition called a dry socket


It helps to remember that our bodies heal exceptionally quickly when we allow them to do so. Stock up on your favorite sports drink and soft snack and settle in for a Netflix binge of the year. It may not be a fun excuse, but having surgery to remove your wisdom teeth definitely means a day off from school or work to catch up on some sleep and some shows. Doctor’s orders!

How long will my recovery take?

The length of your recovery time can depend on a few factors, but most patients will be fully recovered within 3-4 days. For patients who experience an impacted wisdom tooth, your recovery may take slightly longer as that can make surgery a bit more complicated and affect more of your jaw and bone tissue. Maintaining proper oral hygiene through brushing and flossing, and following Dr. Carter’s post-op instructions will help prevent any infection that could delay your mouth’s healing. 

How to Prepare for Wisdom Teeth Removal

We’ve got your smile and your back at Smile Studio Family Dentistry and Orthodontics!

Being prepared for your wisdom teeth removal surgery comes down to taking a few simple steps ahead of time. At Smile Studio Family Dentistry and Orthodontics, we want to treat our patients like we would treat our families. That means our supportive Zachary team works with you before, during, and after your procedure to ensure you recover well and reach your smile goals! Dr. Carter is dedicated to the quality of your treatment, so he always encourages his patients to call with any questions or concerns. 

Caring for your smile is a lifelong journey, and the smile studio team will be here for you every step of the way. From our 2-way texting communication to our digital scanner to reduce those outdated, goopy impressions, we want to always make our treatment current with the most advanced and practical improvements for your care. We offer comfortable dental treatment and aesthetic orthodontic options like ceramic braces and Invisalign for faster and more efficient tooth movement and faster treatment times.

We proudly serve patients of all ages from Zachary, Louisiana, and the surrounding areas, so schedule a dental appointment with Dr. David Carter or an orthodontic consultation with Dr. Adriane White today! We can’t wait to help you take the first steps toward a healthier smile!