We give many, many kudos to our oral surgeon and staff...they were amazing. Jack had all of his wisdom teeth out (3), and I had one (just the one causing problems), and afterward we needed nothing for pain other than Advil.
I'd heard the key to recovery was ice, ice, and more ice.
A friend (thanks, Tricia!) suggested making DIY ice pack holders from tube socks...they're easy to tie around your head. While searching on exactly how to make those work, I came across several ideas for homemade ice packs. One site mentioned corn syrup, so I thought I'd give it a try.
First, I bought some fluffy, white tube socks and stitched them together just above the toes.
As you can see, I'm an expert seamstress.
[Note: I bought the cushiest, fluffiest socks ever, but if I had to do it again, I might go with thinner socks to feel more of the cold from the ice packs.]
The day before surgery, I made the ice packs. I simply filled snack sized baggies with corn syrup. Once frozen, I ended up double bagging them.
The corn syrup stays squishy and flexible even when frozen.
Here's what we did: When we first took the ice packs from the freezer, we put them inside the socks...they were too cold directly on our skin right away. After 5-10 minutes, we took them out of the socks and put them right on our cheeks, still using the socks to hold the packs in place. We kept the ice on pretty much all day for 48 hours.
Want to see? Really?
OK...here we are, gauze and all:
I don't know how long these stay cold versus other ice packs. Mr. E gave us a "shaker" from our percussion set, so we could summon him when we needed fresh packs.
Make several packs, so you can rotate them in the freezer.
We did really well with our recovery. I must say, after the horror stories I'd heard, I was nervous. Jack had a bit of swelling on one side for a day or so; I had none.
I was honestly a little disappointed that I didn't have more of an excuse to stay on the All Ice Cream Diet. Man, it was good while it lasted.