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Remove Food out of Holes from Extracted Wisdom Teeth

Often when the wisdom teeth are extracted, large holes in the gums are created in place of them. Food particles tend to get stuck in these holes and merely rinsing with salt water usually doesn't successfully clean them out. This can result in a bad taste in the mouth and complications with the healing process.


  1. Cut a corner off of a small plastic zip-lock baggie, creating a tiny hole.
  2. Fill the baggie with warm water and seal the zipper.
  3. Open your mouth wide and aim the steam of water from the baggie so it flushes out the hole in your mouth, releasing the food particles.
  4. Continue to squeeze to maintain a constant flow until the hole is completely cleaned.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for all holes.
  6. A syringe may be used instead of a bag.


  • A bit of mouthwash or a teaspoon of salt can be mixed into the warm water in the baggie for anti-bacterial purposes.
  • Double check each hole by flushing for a few more seconds to get all the food out- the holes can be deeper than you think.
  • This method works especially well if the wisdom teeth were impacted (hadn't yet broken the skin) and an incision had to be made to remove them, but it's worth a try if they were simply pulled also.
  • If the above steps fail, try using a toothpick to carefully shift the food out of the hole. Be wary of touching the gum though!


  • Only begin this process when you can comfortably open your mouth.
  • This process is not to be used in place of anything your surgeon instructs you to do, such as the warm salt water rinse.
  • If you experience any pain during this process, consult your surgeon before continuing.

Things You'll Need

  • small plastic zip-lock baggie
  • scissors
  • warm water
  • salt or mouthwash (optional)

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