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Removing Food Stuck in Wisdom Tooth Hole (5 Effective Ways)

comida atascada en el agujero de la muela del juicio

Dr. Andreas

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Written by

Q.F. Nayibe Cubillos Morales


Medically Reviewed by

Dr. Gustavo Assatourians D.D.S

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What to do with food stuck in wisdom tooth hole? In the days following surgery, it is very likely that food particles will be deposited there. The extraction of wisdom teeth leaves a hole in the gum, specifically in the place that the tooth occupied. 

When wisdom teeth do not have sufficient space in the dental system or emerge in the wrong position, the dentist will recommend removing them.
Wisdom teeth extraction is a surgical procedure performed by an oral surgeon. After the intervention, a blood clot forms over the hole left by the extracted tooth.

It is part of the healing process, which can take several days. In the postoperative stage, care is necessary to facilitate healing, during which time particles of food may be deposited in the holes at the extraction site.

The remains of food stuck in the hole of the extracted wisdom tooth is a common situation that – in some cases – can cause inflammation and discomfort in the gum.
In addition, after the gum has healed, a hole may remain where the tooth was, making it easier for food remains to settle there.


How to Avoid Getting Food Stuck in Wisdom Tooth Hole? 

To prevent food from getting stuck in a wisdom tooth hole, in the days following surgery, it is necessary to take care:

Soft food diet

Crunchy or chewy foods should be avoided. It is also recommended not to consume acidic or spicy foods since they can dissolve the blood clot. It is appropriate to choose a diet of soft foods: broths, shakes, noodles, scrambled eggs, mashed potatoes, or yogurt, among others.

It is recommended not to eat small foods such as rice and seeds. You should not consume hot or acidic drinks, chewing gum, meat, strawberries, blackberries, corn, nuts, popcorn, whole grains, or toasted bread.

Do not chew in the area near the hole

Chew food on the other side of the mouth. If several wisdom teeth were removed, eating may be difficult. Request the guidance of the oral surgeon who performed the intervention.

Mouth rinses

After each meal, a gentle mouth rinse should be done with a mixture of water and salt. This will help remove food particles and kill any bacteria. 

food stuck in wisdom tooth hole


Recommendations for Self-care

After the surgical extraction of wisdom teeth, it is appropriate to take care of recovery.

• Increase fluid intake: This keeps the mouth moist, which keeps clots in place and speeds recovery. However, do not drink sodas or carbonated drinks since they can weaken the clots.

• Avoid suction: Any activity that involves sipping/absorbing/sucking can cause a dry socket, with the consequence of losing the blood clot that covers the hole, exposing the bone and tissue.

• Do not drink alcohol: Alcohol consumption can interfere with recovery, causing more swelling and pain. It can also counter the effect of painkillers and other medications that are part of the post-surgery treatment. 

drinking water


How can the Wisdom Tooth Extraction Site be Cleaned?

The initial recommendation is not to try to remove food residue with your fingers, tongue, or any sharp, non-sterile instrument. This can affect the blood clot and disrupt the healing process.

Available include the following:

1. Cotton applicator

A cotton swab or similar applicator will clean the area with gentle movements. It is recommended to do this cleaning one week after surgery, so as not to interfere with the healing process.

2. A syringe filled with warm water

A sterile syringe is filled with room temperature or lukewarm water. The nozzle of the syringe is held over the hole in the tooth and the area is gently irrigated.

3. Brush the area

With a soft-bristled toothbrush, gentle sweeps can be made over the space of the tooth hole. It is recommended to apply this procedure a week after the extraction of the wisdom tooth to allow time for the gums to heal.

4. Warm water rinses with saline

Mix a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and mix. Take a little of the solution and make gentle swishing movements, especially in the area of the wisdom tooth hole. Be careful not to burst the blood clot. The rinse is then discarded. Repeat the rinse at least three times a day.

5. Rinse with herbal tea

This alternative helps with inflammation. Some herbs known for their anti-inflammatory properties are chamomile, turmeric, and green tea. You can also use coconut oil or oregano oil. Rinses are done with lukewarm water, three times a day. 

brushing teeth


When Should You See the Dentist?

After the intervention for the extraction of the wisdom tooth, the gum requires between 4 and 6 weeks to heal completely.
Consult your dentist if any of the following situations occur:

• Collection of pus and oozing

• Any sign of infection or dry socket

• After 3 days of surgery, there is swelling

• Stabbing pain 2 days after the intervention

• Numbness

• Excessive bleeding

• High fever

• Palpitations and tingling

• Unpleasant or sour taste.

• Bad breath is perceived after 3 days

Following the recommendations for diet and care in the days after the extraction of the wisdom tooth, in combination with oral prophylaxis in removing food stuck in the wisdom tooth hole, will allow the site to close successfully.

In the event of an adverse recovery situation, the treating dentist should be consulted as soon as possible to indicate the procedure to follow that will stabilize the oral health condition.



1. Burgess, Lana (November 5, 2020). How can I relieve wisdom teeth pain?

2. MedlinePlus (November 30, 2020), Dry socket /

3. Nova Scotia Health Authority (2020) After Dental Extractons or Wisdom Teeth Removal /

4. Sissons, Claire (December 13, 2021) How long does it take to recover from a wisdom tooth extraction? /

5. Watson, Isabella (May 17, 2019), Food stuck in a hole where wisdom teeth are extracted /

6. Whelan, Corey (Enero 7 de 2021) 8 Tips to Remove Food Stuck in Wisdom Tooth Hole /

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