Oral Hygiene Affects Pain After Wisdom-Tooth Extractions


September 26, 2001

By Nancy Volkers
InteliHealth News Service

People who do not brush and floss properly or regularly can experience more pain after wisdom-tooth removal than people who practice good oral hygiene.

Researchers at Valencia University and Barcelona University, both in Spain, asked people to record their levels of mouth pain and inflammation at two, six and 12 hours after having a wisdom tooth extracted, and then once each day for the next week. Before the surgery, each person’s oral-hygiene status was evaluated by an exam.

The researchers found that people experienced the most postoperative pain six hours after surgery and the most inflammation 24 hours after surgery. People with the poorest oral hygiene experienced the highest levels of pain over the entire study period, and used the most analgesics (such as aspirin or Tylenol) in the first 48 hours after surgery. Poor oral hygiene did not affect the level of inflammation.

The research was published in the September issue of the journal Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology, Oral Radiology & Endodontics.

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