Pain experience after simple tooth extraction

J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2008 May;66(5):911-7. doi: 10.1016/j.joms.2007.12.008.


Purpose: To assess pain experience after simple uncomplicated tooth extraction and to see if there is a need to prescribe analgesic drugs after such a procedure.

Patients and methods: A random sample of patients presenting for tooth extraction at the Maxillofacial Unit, Jordan University of Science and Technology was included. A baseline assessment of previously experienced general and dental pains using numeric scales was done. Subsequently, tooth extractions were done and telephone interviews were made during evenings for a week. Pain intensity was assessed on a numeric scale, and use of analgesic drugs and pain quality were recorded.

Results: At the evening of extraction 81.8% of patients had pain. Female gender predominance in pain reporting was statistically significant on postextraction days 3 and 5. Chronically inflamed teeth caused the highest mean pain intensity scores and nonsmokers showed significantly higher mean pain intensity scores compared with smokers. Mild pain was experienced by most patients (38.6%) on the evening of extraction. It was found that 55.3% of participants (largely females) used analgesic drugs on the evening of extraction, and 6.8% of participants still used analgesic drugs on day 7 postextraction. There was a significant correlation between mean pain intensity score and previous dental injection pain.

Conclusion: Patients, notably females, experienced pain of varying intensity after simple uncomplicated tooth extraction maximally at the evening of extraction; and greater than 50% of the patients used analgesic drugs. We recommend offering regular analgesic drugs during the first week after tooth extraction.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analgesics / therapeutic use
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Child
  • Facial Pain / drug therapy
  • Facial Pain / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Pain, Postoperative / drug therapy
  • Pain, Postoperative / etiology*
  • Statistics, Nonparametric
  • Tooth Extraction / adverse effects*


  • Analgesics