Updated: 1/28/2020 Some of the best YouTube videos have come from someone being filmed right after he or she wakes up from having his wisdom teeth removed. That being said,…

Full-mouth X-ray with impacted wisdom tooth

Enjoying Thanksgiving Dinner Without Your Wisdom Teeth

Updated: 1/28/2020

Some of the best YouTube videos have come from someone being filmed right after he or she wakes up from having his wisdom teeth removed. That being said, removing your wisdom teeth can be stressful – from trying to schedule the procedure to having Grandad tease you about losing your wisdom. As it turns out, it’s not uncommon for people to schedule surgery during holidays like Thanksgiving. It allows for a few extra days of rest and recovery without having to take off work.

For all of you who are in this situation this year (or have family members who are), here’s what you need to know about having your wisdom teeth removed – and during the Thanksgiving holiday, no less!

When Should I Get My Wisdom Teeth Taken Out?

Generally, the age range preferred is 18 to 24 years old. During these years, the risks and complications of removing the teeth are minimal. At age 18, the roots of the teeth are about two-thirds of the way in and after age 24, the difficulty in extraction has a risk of increasing.

How Should I Prepare for My Surgery?

One word: anesthesia. In the likely case that your dentist will use this method, you want to be sure of a few things:

  • Have someone drive you to the dentist and back.
  • Consider fasting the night before – anesthesia can cause a nauseous stomach.
  • Time off – anesthesia doesn’t allow for a quick recovery. It can take up to 24 hours to completely wear off. (But hey, you might be the next Internet sensation.)

What Are Some Tips for Recovery?

  • Rest. This is a crucial part of recovering from the procedure! Give your body time to heal and don’t put too much strain on your mouth. Relax, be patient and sit out of the family football game this Thanksgiving. Who knows, acting as referee may be your thing!
  • Prop up on pillows when relaxing. Lying flat could cause prolonged bleeding.
  • Use an ice pack to help with swelling. Don’t worry, chipmunk-face is a common side effect and isn’t permanent.
  • Don’t brush your teeth or rinse your mouth until 24 hours after the procedure.
    • Once 24 hours pass, try rinsing your mouth with warm water and salt (1/2 tsp. salt and 8oz of water).
  • Eat soft foods, such as:
    • Smoothies/Milkshakes (NOTE: Do NOT use a straw! This will not only strain your mouth but will cause bleeding and other unpleasant side effects.)
    • Yogurt
    • Potatoes (preferably mashed)
    • Soup
    • Oatmeal
    • Ice cream/sherbet
    • Apple Sauce
    • Cooked Veggies
    • Soft fruit
    • Jello/Pudding
    • Eggs

Here are a couple of Thanksgiving recipes for soft foods:

Butternut Squash Soup

Frozen Pumpkin Mousse Pie

Gluten Free Stuffing

If you’re getting your wisdom teeth removed this Thanksgiving break, check out our other Thanksgiving recipes, but remember to look for the soft foods. Have a great Thanksgiving filled with food and rest, and maybe a milkshake or two!

Milkshake Post Wisdom Teeth Removal

Photo by Joe Strupek / CC BY-ND











Did you have your wisdom teeth removed over Thanksgiving break? How were you able to still enjoy the holiday?


Katie is 1Dental’s copywriter and social media marketer. She aims to promote dental health through new blog posts heavily researched and sourced by topic and social media updates and outreach. Katie has completed her bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies. You’ll find her posting regularly on 1Dental’s social pages: Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Pinterest.

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