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Post-Wisdom Teeth Removal and Diet

February 10, 2012

I just had my wisdom teeth removed yesterday morning. Fortunately the procedure went relatively easy. Only minor pain during surgery, even though I was only on local anesthetic. And minimal post-surgery swelling. At the end of the procedure, the oral surgeon told me “you should have things like milk shakes, yogurt, smoothies, ice cream…”

I’m not doing strict paleo anymore, but I’m still not having processed sugar or processed food in general, and no dairy. So that list wasn’t going to work! While my tongue was still swollen, I had some hummus so I had something in my stomach. Fortunately, as the swelling from the local anesthetic went down so did the pain. Later in the day I was able to have lentil soup and mashed sweet potato. I also had banana “ice cream.” I had more fruit than usual yesterday, but I figured that small deviation was a lot better than having ice cream or other traditional post-surgery foods. And for dinner I had more lentil soup and scrambled eggs with 1/4 of an avocado, and then a small bowl of oatmeal along with the painkiller I had right before bed. Some minor deviations from my eating goals, but managed to stick fairly close to my goals and have appropriate post-surgery food.

By today, the pain is much subsided. I still took one of my prescription painkillers this morning, and there’s still a dull throbbing in my mouth, but no acute pain, and by midday today I might wean myself off the prescription painkillers. I had close to my normal breakfast: oatmeal, milled flax seed, almond butter, cinnamon, and banana. Normally I would also have walnuts, but no nuts for at least a week because they would puncture the healing wounds (I had extra almond butter instead). I did have my morning coffee today, but let it cool a bit more than usual (extremely hot liquid is also not good right now). I’m not ready to have salads just yet, but for the most part I think I can start returning to a normal diet today.

I definitely noticed some benefits from sticking to my diet. First of all, I did not have as much of an energy crash from the painkillers as I normally would. I realized part of the “normal” energy crash is really from the post-sugar crash associated with the “normal” milkshake type diet people have post-surgery. Second of all, I could not brush my teeth vigorously last night, but because I’m having no processed sugar in my diet, my teeth were not as dirty to start with. No clingy feeling of sugar on them. I still want to get back to normal brushing, but in the short term, the low sugar diet helps keep my teeth clean.

On another note, my muscles are still sore from a couple of hard weeks of working out, so it’s probably good that I’m taking another couple days off while I recover from surgery. The oral surgeon knew I’m training for an Ironman, and warned me several times: no hard workouts for at least a few days post-surgery. But I specifically trained hard leading up to the surgery and planned the downtime in. My body thanks me right now.

282 days till Ironman Arizona.


From → diet, life

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