Exercising After Wisdom Teeth Removal – Dos and Don’ts

Written & Reviewed by Dr David Chen

Are you a fitness enthusiast, gym rat, or athlete and just had your wisdom teeth extracted but you’re wondering if it’s okay to exercise? Look no further because we’ve got you covered.

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Let’s go over the recommended guidelines so that you know when you can get back into it. Dad bods might be trending but everyone still wants that six pack right? We’re no stranger to working out so we completely understand.

Guidelines to exercise after wisdom tooth removal

To make it easy, here is a chart for all of the dos and don’ts for physical exercise after your wisdom tooth extraction.

TimelineThe DosThe Don’ts
Day 1Light stretching, foam rolling, lacrosse ballNo exercise; No Workouts; Nothing that will get your heart racing
Day 2-3Pre-hab and Rehab exercises; Light exercising at 50% capacity; Deload days; Recovery workoutsNo max effort lifts
Day 4+Workout and exercise at 100% capacityNo restrictions

Day 1

On the day of the extraction there are the most restrictions to exercising and working out. The aftercare for your wisdom tooth removal specifically instructs that you reserve this day as a day for rest.

That means you should NOT be partaking in any type of physical activity at all, none. Essentially anything that will get your heart rate up will be forbidden. Very light recovery work that does not cause cardio or aerobic stress is okay.

Permitted activities:

  • Light stretching
  • Foam rolling
  • Lacrosse ball rolling
  • Massaging

Non-permitted activities:

  • Heart rate inducing activities (cardio)
  • Weightlifting
  • Bodybuilding
  • Powerlifting
  • Crossfit
  • Yoga (all advanced moves especially the inverted positions)
  • Sports – basketball, hockey, baseball, football, etc.

You literally had a surgical procedure done on your mouth, you’re not going to be in any condition to do what you normally do.

Day 2-3

On the second and third day, a lot of the restrictions will be lifted. You are permitted to do a lot more exercises and types of them but there is a caveat. You should avoid performing at max capacity and aim for about 50% intensity. That means you’ll be doing a lighter workout for these two days.

Permitted activities:

  • Light stretching
  • Foam rolling
  • Lacrosse ball rolling
  • Massaging
  • Operate at 50% intensity (weightlifting, bodybuilding, powerlifting, crossfit, yoga, sports)

Non-permitted activities:

  • Max effort workouts
  • 80%+ perceived effort exercises or workouts
  • Running a marathon or half-marathon

Basically all max effort workouts will still be off limits. A prime example would be the deadlifts or squats that can potentially give you a nosebleed. Take it easy and use these two days as more of a deload or recovery day to ease back into your routine.

Day 4+

The fourth day is the safest time to workout and exercise after having your wisdom teeth taken out. At this point you should’ve recovered enough where there are no longer any restrictions on what you can do. In other words you’re fully functional and can operate at normal capacity.

What are you waiting for? Go on out there and get back to living your life. Do what you want and need to do!

Exercising too soon can be harmful

The restrictions to physical activity stem from the fact that removing your wisdom teeth is a surgical procedure. As with all types of surgeries regardless of which body part they were performed on, there will be dos and don’ts for the recovery.

Here are some reasons why you may want to limit your exercising or abstain from it completely:

  • Compromised physical condition. Taking out your wisdom teeth is a traumatic experience, both physically and mentally. You will not feel at your best to be able to perform like you usually do during your workout. Rather than trudging through a poor workout, you might as well rest so that you can have a more productive one after you’ve recovered. Don’t forget that you’ve also lost a lot of blood and that is certainly a contributor to poor conditioning.
  • Increased risk of bleeding. After the extraction your main priority is to get the wisdom tooth socket to stop bleeding. You’re forbidden from rinsing, spitting, and drinking through a straw because all of those create a lot of pressure in the mouth. The intraoral pressure can dislodge the blood clot and make you resume bleeding. Intense physical activity will get blood rushing to your head and some of them can create a lot of pressure as well. Think of the heavy powerlifters who get nosebleeds from maximal effort lifts.
  • Delays healing. In order to maximize your recovery, you want your body to spend all of its efforts and nutrients on the extraction site. If you exercise, your body will be splitting up resources to helping your muscles recovery and the wisdom tooth hole to close. You will heal slower if you do it!


Fitness may be a large part of your life or perhaps it is your career, we understand that you want to get back to exercising as soon as possible. It’s good for us even for those of us who don’t normally do it.

However there are restrictions to what you can do after having a surgical extraction in your mouth. You should definitely rest as much as possible but you’re not completely bedridden for the next week. The first day is forbidden but you can ease back into it slowly but surely.

  • Day 1: please spend the day resting and recovering so that you can live to fight another day.
  • Day 2-3: You are permitted to workout but please limit what you do. We recommend operating at about 50% capacity on the second day. You may increase by 10-20% on the third day. Take it slowly please.
  • Day 4+: Back at it you go because there are no more restrictions!

Hopefully that helps you in deciding what you can and can’t do in regards to physical activity after your surgery.


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