3 Tips For Making Your Next Extraction Easier

21 April 2016
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


Tooth extractions are often necessary, whether your tooth is beyond repair or you need your wisdom teeth out before they cause problems. Although many people are intimidated by extractions, there are ways to make the process easier and reduce the likelihood of complications.

Address Extractions Promptly

Many people avoid having a necessary extraction until they have no other option, often because they have dental anxiety. Unfortunately, waiting until your tooth is severely painful and infected will make the experience worse. Novocain is a common injectable anesthetic used for dental work. When there is an infection, it can be more difficult to fully anesthetize the tooth. In some cases, the presence of an abscess or infection may not be noticeable until the dentist is in the process of removing the tooth. If they have already begun the procedure, they must continue to extract the tooth. If you know you are facing an extraction, have the procedure done as soon as possible, before an infection occurs.

Consider Your Menstrual Cycle

If you are a woman who is still menstruating, you may want to factor in your menstrual cycle if you need an extraction. When given the opportunity, scheduling your extractions during the latter phases of your menstrual cycle may reduce your chance of dry socket. Dry socket most commonly occurs when you do not follow post-extraction instructions, such as using a straw or smoking within the first day or two after the procedure. However, some people experience dry socket because the blood clot does not form, which is vital for protecting the underlying bone. If your periods are fairly regular and your extraction is not an immediate concern, try scheduling your procedure during the week leading up to your period.

Ask About Anti-inflammatories

Ibuprofen is commonly prescribed for simple extractions, but when your extraction is more complicated, you might be prescribed a narcotic pain reliever. If you are only given a narcotic pain medication, ask your dentist if you can safely use ibuprofen or naproxen with your prescription.

Although narcotic pain medications may be helpful for some types of post-extraction pain, you will likely experience some degree of inflammation and swelling with a complicated extraction. Anti-inflammatories often do a better job at controlling this type of pain than narcotic pain medications. Depending on the type of narcotic pain medication you are prescribed, you may be able to take an anti-inflammatory medication at the same time, or do alternate dosing to avoid stomach upset.

Before you become anxious about an impending extraction, consider ways to make the process easier. By taking a proactive approach to extractions, you will find the experience was less intimidating than you imagined.