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About nine out of ten people will need to have at least one back molar, or “wisdom tooth,” removed. For many, it may be the most significant dental surgery they will ever undergo. Reflecting its holistic approach to the dental arts, our team at Pasadena Smile Center wants you to know what to expect and and how to have a smooth recovery after wisdom teeth are extracted.

What to Expect During Recovery

This is a routine procedure, and complications are rare. You should not expect severe discomfort, but it will take a few days to recover. The number of wisdom teeth that were extracted can also be a factor in your post-surgery experience.

  • Anesthetic – Extracting wisdom teeth requires the use of anesthetic. Prior to your surgery, your dentist will advise you about this aspect of your treatment and can the minor, short-term effects of anesthetic.
  • Pain - As the anesthetic wears off, you can expect to feel more pain at the extraction site and will be prescribed pain medication, so you can stay comfortable in the early stages.
  • Bleeding – Some bleeding is normal. You will have gauze packs placed on the area of where the teeth were removed, and for the first hour your advised to bite down on them firmly to help stop or prevent bleeding. You can replace the gauze every 30 or 45 minutes as the bleeding subsides. Our dentist will provide you with full instructions.
  • Swelling - In addition to some pain, you will experience swelling, which varies person to person. These are both routine effects from the surgery. You can place a cold pack, a bag of frozen peas on the outside of your cheek to help with the swelling. During the first day, if needed these can be applied for twenty minutes at a time, followed by twenty minutes of rest.
  • Nausea – A few rare patients experience some nausea. This is a short-term effect and quickly subsides if it should occur.

What Can I Eat While I’m Recovering?

You will need to pay attention to what you eat after wisdom teeth have been extracted. The guidelines are simple, and you have plenty of options that will appeal to you. It’s important to keep your mouth wet, so staying hydrated is important.

These are some things you should not avoid for one week:

  • Crunchy foods.
  • Foods with small particles that could lodge in the tooth socket (e.g. rice, popcorn) and possibly lead to problems.
  • Spicy foods.
  • Chewy foods.

Fortunately, the list of things that are perfectly fine to eat is much larger, for example:

  • Soups – The warning about crunchy, chewy and tiny bits of food does apply here. Broth, blended soups or soups that do not contain large chunks of meat or vegetables are good. Soup should be served warm rather than hot.
  • Ice cream – What’s better than a medical recommendation to eat ice cream? Flavors that contain hard or crunchy pieces of candy, nuts, etc. must be avoided, as should any sort of cone.
  • Applesauce – A refreshing way to receive valuable nutrients and fiber.
  • Pudding or Jell-O – An increasing number of products are available in this category that have no sugar or reduced sugar content.
  • Smoothies – There are infinite options here, encompassing fruits, vegetables, a variety of protein powders and more. Avoid adding fruits with small seeds, such as raspberries or blackberries. One important note: Do not use a straw! Sucking through a straw can cause a healing clot to be pulled off the tooth socket.
  • Oatmeal – Another great source of fiber, though one you should save until the third day or so after your surgery.
  • Mashed potatoes – filling and tasty, mashed potatoes are an excellent option.
  • Yogurt – A food with many health benefits, yogurt can also help calm your stomach, particularly if you are taking medications or supplements.

A Few Other Do’s and Don’ts After Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Some do’s:

  • Keep your mouth clean but be very gentle around the area(s) of the surgery.
  • If bleeding is minor, you can rinse with saltwater. (One teaspoon in an eight-ounce glass of water.
  • Rest on the couch or in bed for the first day.

Some don’ts:

  • Don’t exercise until three to four days have passed.
  • Don’t force your mouth open.
  • Don’t smoke, as it can cause the tooth socket to become dry.

If you would like to learn more, contact us today and schedule a consultation with one of the best dentist Pasadena has to offer.

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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19 View Update Virtual Consultation

Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

May 2020

Dear Valued Patient:

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and staff safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:

  • All patients must wear a mask when entering the office.
  • Anyone accompanying you will be asked to wait in their vehicle.
  • Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office.
  • Upon arrival at your appointment your temperature will be taken for the safety of all staff and patients.
  • Prior to receiving treatment you will be asked to rinse with an antimicrobial for a minimum of 30 seconds
  • We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.
  • You may see that our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.
  • UV Air purifiers have been placed throughout the office.
  • Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.
  • We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time, so we ask that you do your best to be on time.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office at (626)798-7834 or visit our website at pasadenasmilecenter@yahoo.com.

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends.


Sincerely, Niloufar Molayem, D.D.S. & Team

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