What’s the Average Time for a Tooth Extraction?

Team Health Cages

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how long does it take to pull a tooth

Understanding Tooth Extraction and Recovery:

Getting teeth removed can take 30 minutes to an hour, or even longer if it’s a complicated case or if many teeth need to be. After the surgery, your mouth will feel swollen and hurt, but that will get better over the next 10 to 14 days.

Tooth extraction is a common dental procedure performed for decay, trauma, or overcrowding issues. Recovery time varies based on the complexity of the extraction and adherence to post-operative care. Following the dentist’s instructions diligently is crucial for a smooth and successful recovery process.

In this blog, we’ll talk about these subjects:

What is a Tooth Extraction?

A tooth extraction is when a dentist or oral surgeon removes one or more teeth from your mouth. They numb the area with local anesthesia to reduce pain.

During the procedure, they carefully take out the tooth and gum tissue around it. Afterward, they put a gauze pad there to help a blood clot form. This clot protects the socket and helps it heal.

Sometimes, a tooth needs surgical extraction. This happens when a tooth is stuck (like wisdom teeth) or if a regular extraction isn’t possible. This type is more complicated and might need stitches or special tools.

How long it takes to heal depends on the type of extraction and your dental health. A simple one might take a few days to a few weeks, while a surgical one could take a few months.

Sometimes, there can be problems like dry sockets, so it’s important to follow all the dentist’s or surgeon’s instructions for recovery and care afterward.

How Long Does A Tooth Extraction Take?

Numbing the Tooth

First Step – Making it Numb: The tooth-pulling process begins with a mild medicine to make the area numb. Your dentist might choose a local medicine or a stronger one that makes you sleep for a little while.

  • This part is usually easy and shouldn’t hurt.
  • It can take 5 to 30 minutes, depending on the medicine used.

Extraction of the Tooth

Next Step – Taking the Tooth Out: Most teeth are firmly in the jawbone and held by a ligament. To take it out, the dentist makes the socket (the space the tooth is in) bigger.

  • The tooth is gently moved back and forth until it’s loose enough to come out.
  • You might feel some pressure in your mouth, but no pain.
  • This step usually takes 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the tooth.

Closing the Space

Then – Closing the Hole: After the tooth is out, the dentist cleans and smoothens the socket.

  • Any extra tissue is removed, and the socket is compressed.
  • Gauze is used to keep it clean and sometimes stitches are needed.
  • This part can take 10 to 30 minutes, based on how hard it was to get the tooth out.

Finishing Up

Last Step – Waiting and Care: Once everything is done, you might need to wait for the medicine to wear off before leaving.

  • This could take 15 minutes to an hour, depending on the medicine.
  • Then, you’re ready for post-procedure care.

Reasons for Tooth Extraction

Dental Problems

Sometimes, injuries to the mouth can damage teeth, bones, or tissue. This might mean a tooth needs to be removed to fix the bite. Fixing these issues could take longer because there might be complications.

Tooth Issues

If a tooth is diseased, a dentist might try to save it before removing it. They might do a root canal first to see if that helps.

Crowded Teeth

Sometimes, there isn’t enough room in the jaw for all the teeth. To fix this and straighten the smile or stop the pain, a dentist might decide to remove some teeth. They might use X-rays to decide which ones to pull.

Saving Teeth

Dentists always try to save teeth if they can. But sometimes, pulling a tooth is necessary. The next step is figuring out how to do it.

Types of Tooth Pulling

There are different ways to pull teeth, depending on what’s needed.

Simple Extraction

If the tooth is visible and not broken, it’s a simple extraction. The dentist loosens it with a tool called an elevator, then removes it with forceps.

Surgical Extraction

If the tooth is not out of the gum or is broken, surgery might be needed. The dentist makes a small cut in the gum to take out the tooth or broken piece.

Once the dentist knows what kind of extraction is needed, they can figure out how long it will take to pull the tooth.

Types of Tooth Extractions?

There are different types of tooth extraction, from simple to complex.

The most common is a simple extraction, where a visible tooth is removed. It’s quick, taking only a few minutes, and you can usually go home right after.

Afterward, stick to soft foods and avoid smoking or using a straw.

Sometimes, a more complicated extraction is needed for a broken or stuck tooth, like wisdom teeth.

Wisdom tooth removal is an example of complex extraction. It might need local or general anesthesia and could involve removing bone or tissue. This can take a few hours and might happen in a hospital.

After any extraction, you’ll have gauze on the site for about an hour. Nitrous oxide might help with pain and anxiety.

For the first day after the extraction, rinse your mouth with warm salt water and avoid spitting, using straws, or smoking

Recovery Time for a Tooth Extraction?

Recovering from a tooth extraction depends on how complicated it is and how well you take care of your mouth. Usually, recovering from pulling out a regular tooth is quicker than from a broken or crowded one.

After the procedure, it’s normal to feel some pain or swelling around the tooth hole. To avoid more pain, follow what your dentist tells you to do after the surgery.

Here are some things you can do to recover well:

  • Don’t eat crunchy foods for a few days.
  • Keep the area clean by rinsing gently with warm salt water.
  • Take any pain medicine your dentist gives you.
  • Don’t drink through a straw for the first day.

Recovery time can be different depending on the type of extraction. For example, it might take longer to recover from pulling out a tooth that was infected or crowded. But whatever the case, it’s crucial to do what your dentist says for a safe and good recovery.


Tooth extraction is a common dental procedure that may be necessary for various reasons such as decay, trauma, or overcrowding. The recovery time after extraction depends on the complexity of the procedure and how well post-operative care instructions are followed. While simple extractions typically have a shorter recovery period, more complicated extractions may require more time to heal. Following the dentist’s advice, including avoiding certain foods, keeping the area clean, taking prescribed medication, and refraining from certain activities like using straws, can help ensure a successful recovery. Overall, proper care and attention during the recovery process are essential for a smooth and healthy outcome after tooth extraction.


Q1. How long does it take to remove one tooth?

A1. It usually takes 30 to 60 minutes. Surgical extraction might take longer. The dentist numbs the area, pulls the tooth, cleans up, and stitches if needed.

Q2. Is getting a tooth pulled painful?

A2. Not necessarily. Local anesthesia shouldn’t be excruciating. For complex cases, stronger painkillers like sedatives or anesthesia can help.

Q3. How long does it take to pull a tooth down?

A3. It usually takes 10 to 30 minutes, depending on the tooth.

Q4. What is the hardest tooth to extract?

A4. The wisdom tooth (third molar) is the toughest due to its location and roots. Lower molars, with multiple roots, can also be challenging.

Q5. Which tooth is easiest to remove?

A5. Front teeth with single straight roots are easier compared to molars with multiple roots.