The time after wisdom teeth removal is just as vital as the surgery itself.

No wisdom is lost when your third molars are removed, and your oral health may even improve as a result! Wisdom teeth removal is a common surgical procedure with very few complications. Following a smart aftercare regimen will help speed recovery and prevent any potential issues.

Many choose the Alaska Center For Oral + Facial Surgery for wisdom teeth removal because not only is the surgery performed by world-class oral surgeons, but it’s also done in our state-of-the-art facility where the procedures take less time and are often more cost-effective than a hospital. Get the best aftercare information for wisdom teeth removal below.

Wisdom Teeth Removal Aftercare 101

When you follow an optimal aftercare plan when your wisdom teeth are removed, you can better avoid any unnecessary discomfort and complications such as swelling and infection, so be sure to comply with these recommendations.

Why follow wisdom teeth removal aftercare?

On an annual basis, wisdom teeth removal is one of the most common procedures and oral surgeons perform many of these in their day-to-day schedules. Wisdom teeth removal brings some discomfort, temporary bleeding, swelling, and bruising, but for most, the healing time is quick.

The most common complication is dry socket, but with the right aftercare, it can be prevented.

Dry socket may begin with bad breath, an unpleasant taste in your mouth, a low-grade fever, and swollen lymph nodes and can be painful because the blood clot that forms over the extraction site is dissolved or dislodged exposing nerves and bone.   

To avoid dry socket complications, promptly after the surgery adhere to the following:

Keep the gauze in the surgical area for half an hour or as recommended by our staff. Once the time has passed, remove and discard the gauze.  

  • Avoid touching or poking around the surgical site.
  • Do not vigorously rinse or swish water or any other liquids.
  • Use pain medications as needed to relieve discomfort as the anesthetic wears off.
  • Take the proper time following surgery to rest and recover.
  • To reduce swelling and tenderness, place ice packs at the sides of the extraction site.

What To Expect After Wisdom Teeth Removal

Because wisdom teeth removal is a surgical procedure, there are some typical things that you can expect.


Following surgery, it is typical to have swelling in your mouth, cheeks, around your eyes and at the side of your face — this is normal and can be expected.

Why is there swelling?

Swelling is the body’s reaction to surgery and aids in the repair and recovery. Swelling may not happen until the next day or so, and should only last for two to three days.

The immediate use of ice packs will be greatly beneficial, and, if you’re able, leave the ice packs in place while you’re awake. After 24- to 36-hours have passed, ice has a nominal effect in reducing swelling.

If your swelling persists or your jaw feels stiff, this is also a normal reaction, and there is no cause for alarm. If you are ever concerned, you can always reach out to us by calling 907-222-5052.


Some bleeding after surgery is to be expected. Bloody saliva, some oozing, and slight bleeding are typical. If excessive bleeding does occur it can be controlled through rising and wiping the original clots and then placing new gauze in your mouth and biting it for at least thirty minutes.

Pressure is the key to stop the bleeding — chewing the gauze only produces more saliva and cause additional bleeding.

To further prevent bleeding, avoid exercise and sit upright — if the bleeding does not stop, call our office.

Aftercare for wisdom teeth removal isn’t complicated, but it is important to be informed and know what to expect so you can better prevent any complications.

We’ve taken a glimpse into the importance of aftercare and what to do immediately after the procedure, in addition to what to expect following surgery such as swelling and bleeding. Look for our next post on this topic as we cover more details pertaining to wisdom teeth removal aftercare.

To schedule your wisdom teeth removal in a patient-focused and innovative facility, call us today to get started.