Common Questions

*Most answers can be found in the Pre and Post-operative instructions pages.

Q. How long is it going to hurt?

A. Patients will have different case complexities as well as different healing abilities, but in general, days 3-5 after the procedure can be the most uncomfortable, and the soreness can last for a week or more.  Following the post-op instructions and taking the pain medications as directed can greatly reduce the discomfort.

Q. When can I play sports/workout?

A. Dr. Johnson highly recommends that you avoid physical activity for 1 week.

Q. How long does the procedure take?

A. Including preparation and recovery time, the appointment will usually be 1.5-2 hours.

Q. Can I breastfeed after the procedure?

A. Please consult your OBGYN, but generally, yes.  It is best to time your breastfeed sessions immediately before taking your next round of Ultracet.

Q. What is Dry Socket?

A. Dry socket is defined as excruciating pain with zero relief from pain medications.  It is caused by the lack of a clot formation in the extraction site.  It usually occurs between days 3-5.  It is not an infection, does not affect long-term healing, and no treatment is necessary.  Dry socket is not actually very common and most pain symptoms are related to normal healing.  If the prescribed pain medications provide some relief, even if they don’t take away all of the pain, you do not have dry socket.  If you feel that you have dry socket or just need some extra relief, please don’t hesitate to call your dental office.

Q.  Can I smoke?

A.  Yes, if you want dry socket :).  Smoking sooner than 7 days after your procedure will greatly increase your overall discomfort, increase chances of infection, and almost guarantee a dry socket.

 Q. Is IV sedation safe?

A. IV sedation is extremely safe when properly administered.  The patient will be comfortable, relaxed, and in a dream-like sleep state and vital signs are continuously monitored.  If necessary, the sedation can be reversed quickly with medications through the IV line.

Q. Is Dr. Johnson an Oral Surgeon?

A. No.  Oral Surgeons are trained in advanced facial trauma reconstruction, jaw surgeries, and in treating patients with severe health issues.  Dr. Johnson is a general dentist that graduated from an Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency program in the United States Air Force in 2006.  It was in this program, where Dr. Johnson became trained and certified to perform wisdom teeth removal under IV sedation.  He now has 10 years of experience performing these procedures at a high level and is also a faculty member for a wisdom teeth removal education program.

I had been dreading to have a molar extracted due to an experience many years ago and today, I know I wasted a lot of nervous energy. Dr. Johnson pulled the tooth yesterday using only local anesthesia at my request. He ordered pain pills and I did take one when the numbness was leaving shortly after getting home around noon and have put the rest away-don’t need them. There has not been any actual pain and I feel perfectly normal. My sincere thanks to you, Dr. Johnson and your assistant for an experience that cured my dread and should I ever need another you will hear from me.

- Marty