Why Can’t You Eat or Drink Before Wisdom Teeth

Why Can’t You Eat or Drink Before Wisdom Teeth Removal?

Wisdom teeth extraction is a common dental procedure that many individuals undergo during their teenage or early adult years. One of the important instructions given by oral surgeons prior to the procedure is to avoid eating or drinking anything for a specific period of time. This requirement is essential to ensure a safe and successful surgery. But why is it necessary to abstain from eating or drinking before wisdom teeth removal?

When wisdom teeth are extracted, it is typically done under local or general anesthesia. An empty stomach is necessary to prevent any complications during the procedure. Here are some reasons why you cannot eat or drink before wisdom teeth removal:

1. Aspiration risk: Eating or drinking prior to the surgery increases the risk of food or liquid particles entering the airway and lungs, leading to aspiration pneumonia.

2. Nausea and vomiting: Anesthetic agents can cause nausea and vomiting. Having an empty stomach decreases the likelihood of experiencing these side effects.

3. Airway management: An empty stomach allows for better airway management during the procedure, reducing the risk of complications.

4. Reduced bleeding: Eating or drinking can increase blood flow to the surgical site, leading to excessive bleeding during the procedure.

5. Sedation effectiveness: Certain sedatives used during wisdom teeth removal may be less effective if there is food or liquid in the stomach.

6. Anesthetic safety: An empty stomach reduces the risk of complications related to anesthesia, such as aspiration and drug interactions.

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7. Faster recovery: Avoiding food or drink before surgery can help patients recover more quickly and comfortably postoperatively.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Can I drink water before wisdom teeth removal?
No, you should not drink water or any other liquids before your surgery.

2. Can I brush my teeth before wisdom teeth removal?
Yes, you can brush your teeth before the surgery, but be careful not to swallow any water.

3. How long before surgery should I stop eating and drinking?
Typically, you should stop eating or drinking anything at least 8 hours before your surgery.

4. Can I chew gum before wisdom teeth removal?
No, you should avoid chewing gum before your surgery to prevent swallowing any saliva or particles.

5. Can I drink coffee or tea before wisdom teeth removal?
No, you should avoid consuming any beverages, including coffee or tea, before your surgery.

6. Can I have a small snack before wisdom teeth removal?
No, you should not eat anything, including snacks, before the surgery.

7. Can I take my regular medications before wisdom teeth removal?
Discuss this with your oral surgeon. In most cases, it is safe to take regular medications with a small sip of water, but your surgeon will provide specific instructions.