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How Long Does It Take to Fully Recover from a Wisdom Tooth Removal Procedure?

How Long Does It Take to Fully Recover from a Wisdom Tooth Removal Procedure?

How Long Does It Take to Fully Recover from a Wisdom Tooth Removal Procedure?

Wisdom tooth extraction is a common surgical practice. A wisdom tooth generally develops in the gums during the late teenage years or early twenties. Due to lack of space in your mouth, they may sometime erupt at an angle or become stuck, only to emerge partially. These types of wisdom teeth are known as impacted wisdom teeth, and they can lead to future oral health problems such as infection and pain. If performed by a specialist, removal and healing of wisdom teeth is generally uncomplicated for most patients.

Healing After Wisdom Teeth Removal: What to Expect

Surgical removal of wisdom teeth is quite common, and most people feel little or no pain after the surgery. Healing time differs for everyone, and it may take longer if your wisdom teeth are impacted. Following your wisdom teeth removal, you may experience slight swelling, mild bruising and discomfort in your face for 3-4 days. You should follow the instructions given by your dentist or oral surgeon on how to take proper care after the surgery.

Here is an outline of the healing stages, after your wisdom teeth removal:

Initial 24 hours: Blood clot formation

2 to 3 days: Improvement in mouth and cheek swelling

7 days: Removal of remaining stitches by the dentist

7 to 10 days: Expected improvement in jaw stiffness and soreness

2 weeks: Expected healing of any mild bruising on the face

How to Speed Up Recovery Following Your Wisdom Teeth Removal

Blood clot formation at the wisdom tooth extraction site is a crucial aspect of the healing process because it:

  • Helps check excessive bleeding
  • Prevents wound infection
  • Boosts new tissue growth
  • Protects the exposed bone

It is important to ensure that these blood clots are not removed during the first 24 hours after the surgery. Avoid the following activities for at least 24 hours:

  • Brushing teeth close to the extraction site
  • Rinsing your mouth
  • Drinking hot beverages
  • Eating foods that necessitate chewing
  • Sucking on straws
  • Smoking or drinking

After 24 hours, gentle rinsing with antiseptic mouth rinse is recommended.

Recovery Tips for Wisdom Tooth Removal

Follow your doctor’s instructions for a faster recovery. Here are a few useful tips that you should follow for the first 3 days after your surgery:

  • Apply an ice pack to remove swelling or the color changes in your facial skin.
  • Use damp heat to treat a sore jaw.
  • Gently exercise your jaw by slowly opening and closing your mouth.
  • Eat soft foods including pasta, rice, or soup.
  • Drink lots of fluids.
  • Brush your teeth after 24 hours of your surgery but avoid brushing against any blood clots.
  • Take all the medicines that are prescribed by your dentist to relieve the pain or swelling.
  • Contact your dentist if you get a fever, or if your pain or swelling doesn’t improve.

What Problems Are Linked to Wisdom Teeth?

Impacted or partially emerged wisdom teeth can lead to dental problems. Food and bacteria can get in the edges of your teeth and gums to cause plaque build-up which can lead to:

  • Tooth decay
  • Gum disease
  • Pericoronitis (an infection of the soft tissue surrounding the tooth)
  • Cellulitis (a bacterial infection in the cheek, tongue or throat)
  • Abscess (pus formation in the wisdom tooth or in the surrounding tissue)
  • Cysts and benign growths (very rarely seen in a wisdom tooth)

Many of these issues can be cured using antibiotics and antiseptic mouthwashes.

It’s best to visit your dentist when you feel pain or discomfort in your wisdom tooth. They will review your condition to suggest if you should get it extracted or not. Wisdom tooth removal is generally suggested by dentists when other treatments have failed.

Plaza Dental Group

Plaza Dental Group is a leading group of dentists in Des Moines, IA that provides high-quality dentistry in a comfortable and stress-free environment. We have a team of caring and highly-skilled professionals that uses state-of-the-art technology and delivers excellent service to the patients. Request an appointment today!


Tooth Abscess: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention

Tooth Abscess: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention

Out of all diseases that affect oral health, tooth abscess is one of the most painful conditions and can cause great discomfort. The pain usually tends to be throbbing and continuous, making it difficult to even eat or drink.

Diagnosis of tooth abscess

A tooth abscess is a bacterial infection that leads to a pus pocket formation in the gums. It occurs when bacteria infect the tooth cavity and cause the gum tissues to degrade.

Three most common types of tooth abscess:

  • Periapical abscess – This form of abscess occurs in the tooth’s root, in the alveolar bone.
  • Gingival abscess – This infection affects the gum tissue lining the teeth, causing the gums to swell and pain.
  • Periodontal abscess – The abscess is formed in the gum pockets, where bacteria can grow and potentially spread to the surrounding tissue.

Symptoms of Tooth Abscess

A tooth abscess is extremely painful, and you may feel a sharp pain in your gums or near the affected tooth. Following are a few other symptoms you might experience: 

  • Swollen gums
  • Fever
  • Bad breath
  • Difficulty in eating or drinking
  • Restlessness
  • Foul taste in the mouth
  • Increased tooth sensitivity
  • Pain across the ear, neck, or jaw

Causes of Tooth Abscess

Lack of good oral hygiene makes your mouth prone to a lot of bacteria. It is the main cause of most oral diseases, including dental plaque, which can lead to a tooth abscess. 

  • Tooth decay – Poor oral health and unhealthy food choices can cause dental plaque, further leading to tooth decay. If left untreated, tooth decay can cause tooth abscess. 
  • Gum infection – Infection in the gum, gum tissue, or in the pockets between the teeth and the gum can also lead to a tooth abscess. 
  • Infection after dental treatment – Infections after dental procedures like root canals, implants, and extractions can cause tooth abscess.

Treatment of Tooth Abscess

Your dentist will first evaluate the pain and severity of the abscess and then accordingly suggest treatment. The condition, if not severe, could be treated with antibiotics. However, if antibiotics fail, the next course of action would be a root canal to save the tooth. If the root canal also proves to be ineffective in removing the infection, and if the infection returns, or if the condition of the tooth is exceptionally bad, your dentist will have to get your tooth extracted. 

Prevention of Tooth Abscess


Maintaining good oral health is the key to avoid tooth abscess. Following are a few helpful tips to prevent this condition from occurring:

  • Make healthy dietary choices
  • Avoid sugary and starchy foods
  • Floss and brush your teeth regularly – ideally, twice a day
  • Visit your dentist at least once every six months
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste

Follow good oral hygiene and be regular with your dental appointments for proper dental care. If you are looking for the best dentist in West Des Moines, get in touch with our expert dentists at the Plaza Dental Group.

Plaza Dental Group

Plaza Dental Group is a leading group of dentists in Des Moines, IA that provides high-quality dentistry in a comfortable and stress-free environment. We have a team of caring and highly-skilled professionals that uses state-of-the-art technology and delivers excellent service to the patients. Request an appointment today!


Root Canal Procedure and How It Affects Dental Health

Root Canal Procedure and How It Affects Dental Health

The root canal of the tooth contains the nerve tissues and blood vessels, also known as the pulp. Root canal therapy or endodontic therapy is designed to cure or remove the infection from the tooth’s root canal by removing the infected nerve and pulp. 

The removal of the infected tooth nerve or pulp does not affect your tooth’s normal functionality as these serve no purpose once the tooth is fully grown, and only acts as a sensory nerve. 

Why a Root Canal Is Needed

The root canal therapy is painless, yet an important treatment to undergo. It protects the tooth from further infection and the possibility of severe tooth decay. Delay in the therapy may cause an abscessed tooth due to the exposure of bacteria and debris and even bone loss around the root tip. However, getting a root canal therapy helps restore your infected tooth and overall oral health. 

Signs to Help You Decide If You Need a Root Canal

Identifying the need for root canal therapy is vital for your oral health. Ignoring these signs might lead to a badly infected or decayed tooth.

  1. Swollen or tender gums
  2. Severe sensitivity to cold or hot objects
  3. Severe pain while chewing
  4. Bad decay of the gums
  5. Cracked tooth

Root Canal Therapy: The Procedure

Once you identify the need for a root canal therapy and consult your dentist or endodontic, an X-ray is taken to analyze the shape and sign of infection in the surrounding bone. Patients are given anesthesia so that the whole process is done at their ease and comfort.

The first step of the therapy is cleaning the root canal: the endodontic or dentist starts by making a small access hole at the tooth’s surface and removes all the decayed tissues and pulp along with the bacteria in small files.

Next, the dentist cleans and decontaminates the hollow and infected part of the tooth through medication. In some cases, the dentists flush away the debris periodically through sodium or hypochlorite. Then, the tooth is filled with a compound into the tooth’s root canal.

In the last step of the therapy, a crown or filling is added to the tooth. Due to the removal of the pulp, the tooth receives its nourishment from surrounding tissues, which in the future may cause the tooth to become weaker, so a crown or filling protects the tooth.

After the crown is placed and complete restoration of the tooth is completed, the patient can use their teeth like before and can easily perform actions like chewing or biting.

Root Canal Completion

However, your tooth may feel sensitive after the completion of a root canal because of inflamed tissues. So your dentist may prescribe you an over-the-counter medicine like ibuprofen to ease the discomfort and pain.

Benefits of Root Canal Therapy

  1. Efficient chewing and biting
  2. Healthy gums and teeth
  3. Maintenance of oral health
  4. Zero pain and inefficiency

Lastly, root canal treatment has a more than 95% success rate, and the teeth fixed with the help of a root canal treatment can last a lifetime. 

If you have an affected tooth and are looking for a root canal procedure to help save it, contact your leading team of dentists in West Des Moines at Plaza Dental Group to get expert root canal treatment.


Plaza Dental Group

Plaza Dental Group is a leading group of dentists in Des Moines, IA that provides high-quality dentistry in a comfortable and stress-free environment. We have a team of caring and highly-skilled professionals that uses state-of-the-art technology and delivers excellent service to the patients. Request an appointment today!

How to Identify and Treat Impacted Teeth?

How to Identify and Treat Impacted Teeth?

In dental terms, an “impacted tooth” refers to a tooth that has not erupted when expected because it may not have enough room to grow, or it can be erupting in the wrong direction. An impacted tooth is simply a tooth that has been blocked from breaking through the gum for a distinct reason. 

What causes an impacted tooth?

Impaction usually occurs in the third molars, also known as wisdom teeth. Wisdom teeth begin to develop around the age of 9, and since they are the last teeth to erupt (usually between late teens and early 20s), they are more likely to impact because by then, the jaw has stopped growing and may be too small to have room for these four teeth. The second type of teeth to be impacted is the maxillary canine. Since these play an essential role in the mouth, the dentist may recommend treatments that encourage such teeth to erupt instead of removing them. These problems can be hereditary, so if a parent had an impacted tooth, their children might have the same issue. 

What are the symptoms?

People may not always experience the following symptoms in some cases. They can reoccur over weeks or months:

  • Bad breath
  • Bad taste in the mouth
  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
  • Pain while biting or chewing
  • Sore throat
  • Recurring headaches or jaw aches

Complications occurring from an untreated impacted tooth

Completely impacted teeth do not erupt through the gums. You cannot clean or care for them. However, if you have one or more partially impacted teeth, they can be tricky to clean. This raises their vulnerability for the following dental problems:

  • The bone around the impacted tooth can weaken.
  • Damage to neighboring teeth
  • Cysts in the bone
  • The alignment of other teeth can change.
  • Pericoronitis
  • Higher risk of gum disease, infection, or tooth decay

How to identify impacted teeth?

After recognizing the symptoms, you should immediately consult a general dentist. If you are experiencing excessive tooth pain, then you should schedule an oral exam as soon as possible. The dentist will identify the unmistakable signs of impacted teeth using an X-ray for proper diagnosis. The impacted tooth may not be visible above the gums. Nonetheless, the dentist can recognize it and refer it to an oral surgeon for immediate treatment.

What is the treatment for impacted teeth?

  • Waiting and monitoring – Instead of surgically removing the impacted tooth, the dentist will regularly monitor it to see if any other problems develop. This will be easy to do if one goes for regular dental checkups.
  • Surgery – The dentist may recommend extraction surgery if one is experiencing too much pain along with other side effects from an impacted tooth or if it is adversely affecting other teeth. The surgery is a simple outpatient procedure, and the patient can go home the same day of the procedure. It usually takes 45 to 60 minutes. The recovery may take 7 to 10 days.
  • Eruption aids – Such aids may be used to enable the canine teeth to erupt properly. These include braces, brackets, or extracting baby or adult teeth that may be blocking the canines. These are more effective for younger people.

If you suspect you have an impacted tooth, contact our dental experts at Plaza Dental Group in West Des Moines. We offer complete dental care solutions, including general dentistry and much more, at affordable prices. For more information, please visit our website.


Plaza Dental Group

Plaza Dental Group is a leading group of dentists in Des Moines, IA that provides high-quality dentistry in a comfortable and stress-free environment. We have a team of caring and highly-skilled professionals that uses state-of-the-art technology and delivers excellent service to the patients. Request an appointment today!


Everything You Need to Know About Tooth Polishing Procedure

Everything You Need to Know About Tooth Polishing Procedure

Tooth polishing is a dental procedure that makes your teeth look stain-free, smooth, and glossy. Teeth whitening can improve the aesthetics of teeth and helps prevent teeth problems.

At many dental clinics, teeth polishing are part of a standard routine cleaning procedure. When paired with dental scaling, it freshens up your breath and prevents tooth decay.

Before you take your teeth polishing appointment, here is everything you need to know about the procedure.

What is tooth polishing?

Tooth polishing is a painless dental procedure in which the dentist uses either a slow speed dental drill or a rubber cup to clean and polish the teeth. Many dentists prefer to use an air-polishing system loaded with baking soda that is not abrasive and does not wear away teeth enamel.

Tooth polishing procedure

  • First, the dentist will inspect your teeth for any decay and weak spots in the enamel.
  • In the scaling process, the dentist will then scrap all the tartar and plaque from the surface of your teeth.
  • Your teeth will be buffed and polished to remove stains.
  • Your teeth will then be flossed and topped with a protective fluoride coat.

Benefits of tooth polishing 

  • Prevents cavities – Plaque eats away the tooth enamel. If left unattended, it can lead to tooth cavities. Tooth polishing can remove the whitish film on your teeth. Having less plaque can protect your tooth enamel, which cannot be completely restored once it is eroded.
  • Freshens the breath – Regular polishing can prevent persistent unpleasant breath. It can keep your mouth odor at bay.
  • Prevents tooth loss – Accumulation of plaque causes gum disease and tooth loss. Gum disease destroys the supporting bone in the jaw and causes the teeth to loosen and eventually fall out.
  • Improves overall health – Frequent teeth polishing can help lower the chances of contracting diseases related to the heart. Tooth polishing can help detect early signs of underlying heart disease.

Tooth polishing cost

Typically, tooth polishing is covered by your dental insurance as a part of your routine dental cleaning and check-up. A dental check-up and cleaning can reportedly cost you anywhere between $150 and $300, depending on the dentist you choose and the cost of living in your area.

Polishing teeth at home 

There are several home remedies and over-the-counter tooth polishing kits available in the market. Some prefer to use baking soda and activated charcoal to polish their teeth.

Though home remedies are popular for teeth whitening, it can cause abrasion of the enamel, tooth decay, and tooth sensitivity. Dentists recommend avoiding DIY and at-home teeth whitening kits, and instead, visiting a professional for tooth polishing treatment.

Tooth polishing precautions 

To keep your teeth shiny and healthy, scaling and polishing every six months is recommended. For those with periodontal issues, tooth polishing every two months is suggested.

If a patient has sensitive teeth or has severe erosion, cup polishing is the best, as it’s less aggressive. Routine cleaning should include scaling, flossing, and polishing to prevent tooth decay. Additionally, patients who suffer from respiratory problems should not have their teeth polished. Finally, those allergic to the abrasive agents should avoid teeth whitening procedures. 

Tooth polishing is a simple dental procedure that results in smooth, white, and bacteria-free teeth. Get in touch with your dentist in West Des Moines and get your teeth whitening appointment today. 

Plaza Dental Group

Plaza Dental Group is a leading group of dentists in Des Moines, IA that provides high-quality dentistry in a comfortable and stress-free environment. We have a team of caring and highly-skilled professionals that uses state-of-the-art technology and delivers excellent service to the patients. Request an appointment today!

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Based on 205 reviews
I have used Plaza Dental Group since I moved to West Des Moines in 2009. The welcoming staff, clean pleasant surroundings. and competent providers have served me well. My experiences have been pleasant, productive outings I approach with gratefulness at the service my mouth and teeth will receive. Thank you, wonderful Dental more
Phyllis Newton
Phyllis Newton
I had an amazing experience at Plaza Dental! Sara my dental hygienist made it even spectacular. I felt comfortable around her. She was very personable and professional. She took the time to explain the whole process and very thorough with the whole process of taking X-ray and cleaning my teeth. I was impressed by her expertise and most of all I felt as if I’d known her for years because she made me feel comfortable! Thank you Sara and the rest of the team for an amazing first time experience!read more
Winnie Lee
Winnie Lee
I finally found my dental home. I had my first consultation with Dr Dietrich today, she is genuinely nice as well as her assistant . I felt welcomed , they care about me and my dental health . I'm looking forward to my first visit in a few weeks!!!!
Cheryl Santee
Cheryl Santee
My experience is just starting but yesterday was my first day and I was treated with so much care, love & respect. They made me feel as if I was at home it was a wonderful feeling. Mind you I am terrified of dentist and here I felt so welcomed with open arms . I will be continuing to go here. So far the best place I highly recommendread more
Danielle Ceballos
Danielle Ceballos
The staff at Plaza Dental are the best. Dr. Odland and his assistant, Becca, have been amazing to work with. They have always been patient, kind, and compassionate. I was always kept comfortable during my procedures and have always had a great experience. I look forward to working with them in the more
Erika Sieren
Erika Sieren
Today I had my first appointment at Plaza Dental. I am one of those patients who is extremely anxious about dental visits and I had avoided getting dental care for awhile .My hygienist Hilary was AMAZING! I'm so happy that I made the appointment and that i am on my way to wanting to show my smile again .read more
Pam Gronewold
Pam Gronewold
Dr. Dietrich is so easy to work with. She's very skilled and her assistants are always able to explain every step of the way. My implant feels great!!
Amanda Godfrey
Amanda Godfrey
I moved to Iowa at the end Of February, and have been looking for a dentist that cared about their patients. When I found Plaza Dental Group, they were able to get me right in, and my experience from the when I walked in to the office, to the time I walked out after my first visit was beyond what I could have hoped for. Dr.Odland and his staff are incredible and made me feel comfortable from start to finish. They explained the next steps regarding my next appointments, and everything that was going to take place. I feel at ease knowing that I am being taken care of. All of my appointments have been great. The front staff is great as well! I can not say enough great things about this office!read more
Jessica Ford
Jessica Ford
Thank you so much got me in fast and great help very nice staff and helped me with a problem that another dentist caused and helping me get the proper care 😁
Rachel Hinrichs
Rachel Hinrichs
My hygienist rocks, love Sarah. We have become friends through the years, she is just too sweet. But there are many great hygienists and Dr. Odland and his team took such good care of me when i broke my jaw and several teeth.
Amanda Westerhold
Amanda Westerhold
Hands down the BEST dentist I’ve ever been to. I have severe anxiety when it comes to the dentist and they were SO sweet/accommodating. Only place I will be going to for my dental needs going forward.
Breanna Bedford
Breanna Bedford
To the whole plaza dental family you guys are the best I strongly recommend you guys to every one🙂🙂🙂 really kind nice people and do the best job EVER!!! Doctor JAY JENSEN you rock and congratulations on your move,also to all the staff you ladies made me feel very comfortable thank you thank you god bless.Doctor Jay Jensen keep doing your thing🙂 and the ladies up front you guys double rock🙂🙂 thanks for opening the door for me Lol, Alvin Thanks Plaza!!!!read more
Alvin Lee
Alvin Lee
As usual, I only waited a few minutes until Talia came to bring me to the back. The treatment itself was pleasant and efficient and everybody was very friendly and helpful. I definitely recommend this place!
Martina Walther
Martina Walther
This place is the BEST. I cannot say enough about how great Lacey is and the job she does! I was so impressed by Plaza Dental Group compared to previous dentists I've visited that I won't be going anywhere else. Highly recommend Lacey, Dr. Odland, and Dr. Dietrich - they are highly educated and knowledgeable, very thorough with their care and listening to your needs, inform/explain things every step of the way, and are so enjoyable and fun to be around. Wish I could give more than 5 stars!read more
Jasenn Greiner
Jasenn Greiner
Dr Colin Odland is the best! He is very knowledgeable, patient, kind and makes sure you are doing ok as he works. I highly recommend him, especially patients that have had bad experiences with dentists in the past.
Debora Lynn
Debora Lynn
I just switched to Plaza because it’s closer to my work/home and I’d give them 100 stars if I could! My hygienist Talia had amazing attention to detail (and I’m known to be very particular) and Dr. Odland’s chairside manner was amazing. I don’t know why I didn’t come here sooner!
Derek Zarn
Derek Zarn
Plaza Dental Group
Plaza Dental Group. 1089 Jordan Creek Parkway, Suite 100, West Des Moines, IA 50266

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Although we accept all major dental insurance plans, we currently do not accept any new Delta Wellness, Medicaid, or any other state-funded insurance.