At some point in our lives we have all fallen prey to the black hole that is the internet. We have shamelessly Googled every question under the sun. In lieu of a doctor's biased opinion, we refer to WebMD; naturally, we discover that we are, in fact, dying of some disease we've never heard of (let alone one we can even pronounce), and proceed to outline our will in the wee hours of the morning. We've watched countless YouTube videos of puppies swimming in a pool, puppies eating a watermelon, puppies howling to a song, and others clips of people that make our eyes widen in horror or water with tears as we double over in laughter. Why should we proceed any differently, then, when we receive the fated news that our wisdom teeth must be removed? I am here to tell you that I did just that, and I have learned what is fact and what is fiction.
Everyone reacts differently to anesthesia. It just so happened that, a week or two before my surgery, a significant amount of anesthesia videos were circling Facebook. As I watched the clips I began to fear I, too, would behave like those in the videos (and I did not trust my brothers to keep such behavior off social media platforms). However, if you're boring like me, you'll probably just wake up groggy with the nurse telling you it's the medication making you cry.
So, no, we don't all take trips to Dubai,
Or fend off ISIS,
Or fight to survive the zombie apocalypse.
Your face will be numb...for a while. By the time I got home and took out my gauze I was famished. (You're not allowed to eat or drink anything 6 hours prior to surgery, so be prepared to be hangry). I was feeling #blessed when my brother agreed to make me a milkshake, until I realized I couldn't feel the cold liquid dribbling down my chin onto my clothes. Do not be alarmed; this is normal. Numbness of the face can sometimes last all day after surgery. Maybe wear a bib, though.
Don't just stock up on ice cream. You've got a solid excuse to eat your weight in frozen treats, but that doesn't mean you'll want to. After the first few glasses of milkshakes and three or four cups of pudding, you'll be begging for broccoli (OK, maybe not broccoli, but you get the picture). As stated above, you have to fast before the surgery, which means you're considerably hungry when you get home; sweets just won't cut if past the first "meal" so do yourself a favor and buy yourself a variety of soups. Butternut squash, split-pea, and tomato and basil are all good choices. Also, two words: drinkable yogurt. Trust me, it tastes better than it sounds, and you can usually get some at your local 7-Eleven.
Say no to soda. Unfortunately, the medication your oral surgeon prescribes you may make you nauseous. While Ginger Ale is great for settling an upset stomach, it is not the go-to solution when you've had your wisdom teeth removed. The carbonation in the soft drink can potentially dislodge the blood clots from the extraction site, causing a phenomenon known as "dry socket" which is extremely painful and can lead to infection. Straws are not the answer to this problem either, because they do not reduce the bubbles in the soda, and the usage of straws themselves can dislodge clots due to the suction.
Don't panic. There are a lot of funky things going on in your mouth right now, but you're not the only one who's gone through this. Instead of worrying, cozy up in a cocoon of covers and catch some ZZZs. Don't stand in front of the mirror with a flashlight freaking out about how weird the stitches look.