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Does tooth extraction hurt? As dentists, this is a question we hear a lot. Patients with extensive tooth decay, a badly fractured tooth, problematic wisdom tooth, or tooth trauma may require tooth extraction. Many of our patients want to know how much discomfort they will feel during tooth extractions. Thankfully, our dental team have cutting-edge technology and techniques to keep you comfortable throughout the procedure. 


Why are tooth extractions necessary?

While our primary goal is to preserve your natural teeth, injuries or infections sometimes dictate the need for tooth extraction. Moreover, leaving a tooth in the mouth that needs extraction can cause more damage overall and more pain.  

For instance, partially and fully impacted wisdom teeth are likely to cause severe complications if we don’t remove them. An impacted wisdom tooth can become infected, jostle with other teeth for space, and cause misalignment. 

Tooth extractions help prevent discomfort and infected or decayed teeth from affecting your gums, bone, and adjacent teeth. 



So does tooth extraction hurt?

In a word, no! We provide all our patients with local anaesthesia and the choice of sedation dentistry.

Dental sedation doesn’t make a patient unconscious, but it does provide a gentle way of helping nervous patients through the procedure. 


What to expect during the procedure?

First, our dentist administers a local anaesthetic to numb the mouth. Then, using forceps, she gently rocks the tooth back and forth to loosen it. Patients may feel some pressure at this point, but they should not feel any pain. 

Once she has removed the tooth from the mouth, the patient must bite down on a gauze pad. This action helps a blood clot form in the socket, protecting the tissue, nerves, and bone. It needs to be held firmly in place for around 30 minutes or until the bleeding has stopped. 

More complex tooth extractions like an impacted wisdom tooth, for example, may require surgical extraction.  An x-ray will help determine the best course of action.

The dentist will make a small incision into the gum to remove any bone blocking the tooth. Sometimes part of the bone needs to be removed, or the tooth has to be cut into small sections to reduce any damage to the surrounding tissue. Once the tooth has been removed from the mouth, the dentist carefully checks the site for any bone fragments that need removing or smoothing to lessen discomfort after tooth extraction. The gums are then closed with a few sutures, and our dentist will talk you through the healing process. 


Does it hurt after tooth extraction? 

Once the anaesthetic effects have worn off and your mouth is no longer numb, you will likely experience some swelling and tenderness. Don’t worry. These symptoms are perfectly normal. Swelling is part of the body’s healing process and helps bring antibodies and nutrients to the wound site to aid recovery.

Over the counter painkillers such as Ibuprofen can be taken to ease any discomfort, and we advocate plenty of rest and relaxation for 24 hours following tooth extraction.

For the first 24 hours, avoid rinsing, spitting, and drinking through a straw to prevent dislodging the blood clot. It also helps keep the wound clean if you refrain from smoking tobacco products for the first 5 to 7 days. Smoking can loosen the blood clot, which, in turn, may lead to a dry socket – a condition where the bones and nerves are exposed. 

pain dental extractions brighton le sandsFor the first week following tooth extractions, patients should slowly ease themselves into activity and adopt a diet of soft foods such as yoghurt, soup, pureed vegetables, and mashed potato. Keep your head raised higher than your heart with pillows to minimise swelling and quicken healing.

Starting the day after tooth extraction, patients can also rinse their mouth with salt water to ease swelling and help prevent infection. Brush and floss your teeth as usual after 2 to 3 days, but brush carefully around the extraction site. 

Following these instructions is critical for minimising any discomfort and getting you back into your usual routine. You may need to schedule a check-up within 10-14 days to remove any sutures and check your healing. 

Hopefully, this has answered your question, “does tooth extraction hurt” and what you can expect during and after the procedure. 


A final word

The team at Bright-On Bay Dental understand your concerns about tooth extraction. Please rest assured that our goal is always to help patients relax and perform the procedure with minimal discomfort. 

If you have any more questions about tooth extraction, don’t hesitate to contact us on (02) 9538 7028 or schedule an appointment using our online booking service.