1. Having pain is a normal part of the recovery process. Keep in mind that pain is part of the healing process and your body’s normal reaction to the surgery. Once a tooth has been fully removed it takes anywhere from 2 to 3 days to over a week for the initial pain to subside. Make sure to take your medications as prescribed and follow the instructions to heal as quickly as possible. The level of pain after the surgery typically correlates with the complexity of the procedure. The simpler extractions heal within 2 to 3 days whereas the more complicated ones as well as wisdom teeth usually require a week or so before you start seeing improvements.
2. Once the tooth is removed properly there is not much more that your dentist or oral surgeon can do for it. An ideal extraction is when your dentist removes the tooth within a few minutes. The surgeries that end up taking longer than fifteen minutes will typically require bone removal and lots of cutting so it will hurt more afterwards. If you lose a lot of bone the dentist or oral surgeon may choose to place some bone graft to assist with the healing process and to preserve the extraction socket better. The dentist may also use sutures to bring your gum tissue together to allow for a better healing process.
Oftentimes patients who have their four wisdom teeth removed all at once return within just a day or two to re-evaluate the area but can’t even open their mouths wide enough for the dentist to see back there since their jaws are still sore. Not much your dentist can do for you if he or she can’t see the surgery site. It is best to give it some time for the initial swelling to subside before going back to the dentist or oral surgeon so he or she can thoroughly evaluate you.
3. Wisdom removals and dry sockets can lead to pain which will last for several weeks. It is very important to avoid spitting for the first day after the tooth has been removed. Applying pressure by biting on gauze is a good way to get the bleeding under control. Keep in mind that the most crucial part of the healing occurs within the first 24 to 48 hours so you must be very careful to follow the instructions and allow for proper healing to occur in this critical period.
- Smokers and those with a long list of medical problems generally heal slower than healthier patients
- You will also heal slower as you age so expect the recovery to take a bit longer
If you spit and don’t follow the instructions then you’re not allowing the blood clot to form and you could end up with what’s known as a dry socket. It basically means poor healing and you will suffer for a few weeks. There is not much to be done for dry sockets, there is a solution that your dentist can apply which helps a little bit, but otherwise it needs to be managed with painkillers and takes a few weeks to resolve. No additional antibiotic is indicated as a dry socket is not an infection but is simply poor healing. And of course when it comes to removing wisdom teeth, especially when the teeth are embedded under your gums or jaw bone, then assume it will hurt for one week and anything less than that is a bonus!
NEXT >> How to Decide
What to do if You’re Experiencing Pain After a Tooth Extraction: Going to the Dentist
How to Decide?
Answer the following questions:
- Has it been more than 3 days and you are still in severe pain?
- If it was a complex wisdom tooth removal, has it been more than one week and you are still in severe pain?
- Have you been taking your antibiotics and pain killers but it’s not helping?
- Do you feel that there is still a piece of tooth or bone left behind?
- Are you having a hard time breathing?
- Are you still gushing blood and you can’t get the bleeding under control?
If you answered “yes” to most of the above questions then you should go back to your dentist or oral surgeon to have the area evaluated further. If you feel the pain levels are too excessive, contact your dentist to see if they can up your medications to a stronger one. If you feel you’re not reacting well to the medications, you should contact the dentist for a substitute. You may be able to handle this over the phone and not necessarily go back to the dentist office.
If you answered “no” to most of the above questions then you should probably try to wait it out for a bit longer to see if the pain is subsiding.
Most pains after extractions go away with tim. How much pain you will be in has lots to do with how difficult your tooth extraction is. Easier extractions come with 2 to 3 days of pain but the more difficult ones take longer and closer to one week. Healing times of a few days to a week are normal as this is your body’s reaction to having a tooth removed. Get some rest, take your medications, follow the instructions and give your body some time to recover.
At the end of the day if you feel that you are more comfortable having your dentist or your oral surgeon re-evaluate the area then you should go ahead and contact them on phone of visit them to have your questions answered. Try to ask any questions prior to leaving the office. Most questions can be answered on the phone as well, but in certain occasions your dentist or oral surgeon will ask you to come back to the office for further evaluation.
NEXT >> What to do if You’re Experiencing Pain After a Tooth Extraction: Going to the Dentist
What to do if You’re Experiencing Pain After a Tooth Extraction: Waiting a Little Bit
1. Most minor pain and sensitivity issues resolve automatically without any additional treatment. You leave the dental office all numbed up feeling confident, until the numbness vanishes and the pain or sensitivity starts to kick in. Being slightly sensitive on a tooth is not that uncommon, especially if you received white fillings or multiple fillings in one setting. If you want to expedite the healing process then stick with a soft diet, consider using a desensitizing toothpaste and wait several days to see if your symptoms improve. If the symptoms are improving then continue to monitoring it and allow some more time to see if it disappears altogether. But if the symptoms remain consistent or worsen, then it is time to call your dentist and make a followup appointment.
2. Redoing the entire filling rarely helps and usually only makes matters worse. When a filling ends up being sensitive or painful you may automatically think that it wasn’t done correctly and needs to be redone. And if there is a portion of the filling missing, if it is overfilled or underfilled, then it does need to be repaired or redone. But to take out an entire filling, drill the tooth more and place a whole new filling, it will almost always make the problem worsen. When the filling becomes larger it only gets closer to the tooth nerve and increases your symptoms. So if the filling is not too high nor too low and if it looks good and feels intact, then allow it some time to see if the symptoms improve before deciding to go back to your dentist for what could possibly end up being lots of headaches!
3. You need to gather some relevant information to convey to your dentist to help him or her reach the correct diagnosis. In order for your dentist to fix the problem, he or she must first correctly diagnose the source of pain. A troublesome filling could be fixed either via repairing the filling or it may require a crown or root canal instead. Your pain symptoms, level of pain, aggravating factors, etc. are all hints that help your dentist come to an accurate diagnosis. Allowing some time to determine which tooth is bothering you and what its symptoms are, will help avoid getting unnecessary treatments or fixing the wrong tooth. Try not to panic and wait a while to see what is really going on with the tooth before contacting your dentist. Unless of course the pain is severe and throbbing in which case waiting is not required and you most likely have nerve damage which will in turn require a root canal treatment.