By Last Updated: April 19, 2024

The wisdom tooth is the last tooth to come out of the mouth, usually around your late teens or early twenties. Ideally, you should have 4 wisdom teeth. But, do not worry if you do not see any signs of this tooth in your mouth.

For many of us, the wisdom teeth tend to become impacted. This means that the tooth, or parts of it, remain hidden in the bone. If left untreated, an impacted wisdom tooth can cause a lot of dental problems. So, many consider getting them removed.

If you are thinking about getting a wisdom teeth extraction, you may be wondering if they may affect your facial structure. Or other things you should expect after treatment… Read along to understand more about wisdom tooth extraction.

Understanding Wisdom Teeth Extraction

There are many myths and hearsay involving wisdom teeth and getting them removed. Here are a few things you should know to set things straight…

Wisdom teeth removal doesn’t affect face shape

First of all, we answer the question, “Can wisdom teeth extraction change the shape of your face”? The short answer is NO. If you are thinking of avoiding wisdom tooth extraction because you are worried it can impact your appearance, you would be happy to know that proper wisdom tooth extraction does not affect your looks!

Impacted wisdom teeth are better removed

Some impacted wisdom teeth can cause dental problems. They may push against other teeth to cause toothache and decay. They also cause food to get stuck under the gums which can lead to gingivitis or bad breath. Infections may also arise with untreated decay. Because of this, it is always best recommended to get them removed. 

Not all wisdom teeth need to be removed

But, for a few lucky ones, the wisdom teeth may come out properly in the mouth. After an X-ray, your dentist can help you understand whether it is best to keep or remove your wisdom tooth. Those that will not pose problems can be kept, so you do not need to worry about getting surgery.

Wisdom teeth extraction has a lot of benefits

Getting an impacted wisdom tooth can benefit your oral health in the long run. Such as, you need not worry about cavities on the back teeth. Also, wisdom teeth that push against other teeth can cause teeth crowding. Without this problem, you can maintain a beautiful and straight smile.

Wisdom teeth extraction requires proper planning

Unlike a simple tooth extraction, getting a wisdom tooth removed requires meticulous treatment planning. Some wisdom teeth are buried too deep in bone or near nerves and blood vessels. It is important to plan out the surgery to prevent complications during and after surgery.

Post-surgery and healing differ for everyone

After getting your wisdom teeth extracted, you can expect some bleeding, soreness, and swelling. Facial swelling can make your cheeks look asymmetrical. This may be a reason why others think that wisdom teeth extraction can change the face shape. But, with proper post-op guidance, this should go away on its own after a few days. 

Factors Influencing Facial Shape

If you find that your facial shape has changed after getting a wisdom teeth extraction, know that it is not because of the surgery itself. The skin, soft tissues, fat, and muscles of your face are not affected by wisdom tooth extraction.

However, facial shape can change due to factors such as:


As a natural sign of aging, the muscles of the face may sag and cause variations in the facial shape. The teeth will also experience normal wear and tear, your folds and wrinkles may look deeper and more defined, and you may have a generally flatter face.

Bone and tooth loss

Loss of teeth causes a decrease in bone height. Without good bone support, the facial muscles will look sunken and the cheeks will appear hallowed. Wrinkles may also be more visible because there are no teeth that add fullness to the face.

Recovery from surgery

After surgery, you can expect some facial swelling to occur. This can last for a few days to a week, but it should go back to normal on its own. To help alleviate the swelling, you can apply a cold compress on your cheek.


A change in diet may also affect the face shape. If you experience weight loss, the fat and muscles of the face may look less defined. This can also happen after surgery as you eat less during your recovery period.

Preventive Measures and Post-Extraction Care

While healing is not linear and will be different for everyone, here are some general tips that can help anyone recovering from wisdom tooth removal make healing more comfortable and faster:

  • Take your prescribed medications.
  • Bite firmly on a gauze pad and maintain gentle pressure on the area to control bleeding.
  • Rest. Avoid strenuous work and heavy activities.
  • Use an ice pack on the surgical side of the face to relieve swelling – 20 minutes on, 10 minutes off.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. But, avoid using a straw.
  • Rinse with warm salt water to flush out bacteria and food debris from the socket.
  • Your diet should consist mainly of soft foods and cool drinks.
  • Maintain good oral hygiene. But, avoid the extraction site for at least 4 days after surgery.
  • Do not smoke and drink alcohol for at least a week after surgery.

If pain, bleeding, oozing, or swelling persists after four days of surgery, call your dentist so they can take a closer look and provide you with better aftercare instructions.

Wisdom Teeth Extraction – Conclusion

The bottom line is that you should not worry about any facial changes after getting wisdom teeth extraction. Instead, consider the numerous benefits that it can do to your smile and oral health. Of course, some minor facial swelling can be expected following your treatment. But, this should heal on its own after a few days.

At Midpark Dental, we have board-certified dentists and surgeons who are well-equipped with knowledge, skills, and experience to safely remove your wisdom tooth. Call us today to book your appointment!