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Can I Wear Retainers After Wisdom Tooth Removal?

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Can I Wear Retainers After Wisdom Tooth Are Removed?

Almost everyone develops wisdom teeth in their late teens and early 20s. Wisdom tooth removal is a standard dental procedure performed by your dental professional to remove problematic wisdom teeth surgically. 

Some people need to wear retainers, and you may be wondering how wisdom tooth removal affects your retainers.

Let’s look at the wisdom tooth removal process, including how it works, why you may need it, and how it impacts your ability to wear retainers following the procedure.

The Wisdom Tooth Removal Process

Wisdom teeth develop through your late teens and early 20s, and most people opt to get them removed for different reasons. Wisdom tooth extraction is a procedure used to remove wisdom teeth before they can cause long-term issues. 

Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, are the final set of molars you develop. Some people may never develop wisdom teeth, or they will erupt normally. 

However, some people may develop impacted wisdom teeth. Impacted wisdom teeth develop when your mouth doesn’t have enough room to accommodate them.

Impacted wisdom teeth may: 

  • Grow at an angle toward the back of the mouth
  • Grow at an angle toward the second molar 
  • Grow straight up or down like other teeth but remain trapped in the jawbone
  • Grow at a right angle to other teeth

An impacted wisdom tooth can cause a variety of problems such as: 

  • Pain
  • Tooth decay
  • Infection or gum disease
  • Damage to a nearby tooth or surrounding bone

Wisdom tooth surgery is necessary when impacted teeth affect your comfort and oral health.

Wisdom Tooth Surgery

Your dental professional will numb the surgical area with a local anesthetic during the surgery. Following the numbing process, an incision will be made in your gum tissue to remove the wisdom tooth. 

Your dental professional will then remove any bone or connective tissue around the impacted tooth and remove the wisdom tooth. Your gum tissue will then be sealed together with stitches. 

Your dental office will walk you through what foods to avoid following surgery and prescribe medication to help manage pain and discomfort.

A smiling woman standing against a turquoise background holds two retainers.

Wearing Retainers After Wisdom Tooth Removal

Retainers keep your teeth from moving after they have previously been straightened, so wearing them is an everyday dental process for some people. 

Following your wisdom tooth removal surgery, pain management and recovery are the first order of business. Pain and swelling are normal with wisdom tooth surgery so wearing your retainers depends on how you’re feeling and your swelling levels. 

You can usually resume normal daily activities the day after surgery, but some things to avoid include: 

  • Smoking
  • Spitting
  • Drinking from a straw
  • Strenuous exercise

Most people recover from wisdom tooth surgery in 3 to 4 days, but if your teeth were impacted or at an awkward angle, it can take a full week to recover.

You can start wearing your retainers as soon as it is comfortable for you. 

Allowing yourself adequate time to recover following surgery is essential, and when you feel ready, you can continue wearing your retainers. 

Some swelling and pain is normal, but you should call your dental professional immediately if there is excessive pain and bleeding. 

Other signs of post-surgery complications can include: 

  • Difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • Persistent numbness or loss of feeling
  • Blood or pus
  • Swelling that worsens over a few days

Contact your dental professional immediately if you experience these symptoms. 

Preserve Your Healthy Smile

The recovery process of wisdom tooth surgery can leave some wondering if retainers are wearable following surgery. The good news is that you’ll be wearing your retainers quickly after surgery, depending on your comfort and barring complications.

Book an appointment with our Calgary dentist today to learn more about the wisdom tooth removal process.

Dr. Saleema Adatia, Calgary dentist

Written by Dr. Saleema Adatia

Dr. Saleema Adatia earned her Doctorate of Dental Medicine (DMD) from Tufts University in 2006. Since then, she’s been committed to serving her patients’ needs with the utmost passion. Dr. Adatia has owned and operated Symmetry Dental since 2013 and has integrated high-quality services with friendly care into the philosophy of the practice.

With a goal of providing the best patient care possible, Dr. Adatia ensures that her practice stays up to date with the latest dental technologies and techniques. Her personal passion for dentistry stems from a desire to create a positive impact on each patient’s quality of life. Whether that means treating people’s pain or restoring function and beauty to their smiles, the goal is always the same: to help make patient’s lives just a little bit better by working together in harmony.

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