How Long Does It Take to Heal after Tooth Extraction?

How Long Does It Take to Heal after Tooth Extraction?

January 1, 2023

A tooth extraction on the weekend may not be your preferred way of spending a couple of days at home. However, getting a tooth pulled becomes necessary for various reasons. Unfortunately, a tooth extraction leaves a temporary hole in the edentulous socket.

How much time the hole needs to close depends on many factors, including the tooth size and the removal process. The gap may close in a few weeks or require several months. While you recover from the dental extraction treatment within a few days, the empty socket requires more time to heal.

Why Would a Person Need a Tooth Extraction?

People may require tooth extractions for various reasons. Crowding, infection, and severe tooth decay are the most common among them. Gum disease also makes extractions necessary when the teeth lose bone support because the condition deteriorates the jawbone. However, these extractions are straightforward and performed under local anesthesia because the teeth are usually visible.

In many cases, people might need surgical extractions of teeth because they have an impacted tooth that hasn’t erupted from the gums, impacted canine teeth if you must have orthodontic treatment, the remaining part of a visible tooth if it has cracked or broken, and fragments of teeth broken during removal from a straightforward extraction.

Besides the above, people undergoing radiation and chemotherapy for cancer might require tooth removal to eliminate their compromised teeth during the treatment. In addition, people seeking treatment with the drug bisphosphonate also must have tooth extractions to remove compromised teeth.

Dentists only perform tooth extractions after exhausting all other efforts to preserve them. Therefore, tooth removal is often the last resort to benefit the dental and oral health of the patient.

Dental Extraction Healing Time

The healing time for tooth extractions varies between patients and depends on the procedure they underwent and the tooth size.

Large visible teeth with several roots take longer to heal than smaller teeth with a single root. You can expect the hole in the socket to close in about three weeks, but complete healing might require several months. However, a straightforward extraction of a small tooth with a single root closes in about seven days to heal.

With surgical extractions, you can expect the hole to almost entirely close in about six weeks after the removal. The indentation will heal completely after several months.

Recovery Tips for Extractions

The dentist in Poway, CA, provides a list of dos and don’ts for people having teeth extracted for various reasons. The recovery tips for dental extractions include the following:


  • Keeping the gauze pad on the surgical site is necessary for at least 30 minutes. Retention of the pad assists formation of a blood clot in the edentulous socket.
  • Rest and recuperation are essential for your body to heal.
  • Your dentist must have information about any medications you take, especially blood thinners that delay the healing of the empty socket.
  • Remaining hydrated by drinking plenty of water at room temperature is essential.
  • Keeping the surgical site clean requires rinsing with warm salt water.
  • Using an ice pack on the exterior of the cheeks is permitted to alleviate the swelling.
  • Soft foods are best preferred after tooth extractions, whether straightforward or surgical.


The Poway dentist suggests not rinsing the extraction site during the initial 24 hours. They also suggest the following:

  • Refrain from drinking extremely hot or cold beverages for a few days.
  • Avoid strenuous activities that accelerate blood flow during the initial few days.
  • Avoid activities that might cause suction in the mouth for a few days for fear of dislodging the blood clot in the edentulous socket.The activities in drinking with a straw, smoking and spitting.
  • Using alcohol-based mouthwash or drinking alcohol for 24 hours after surgical removal is restricted.
  • Patients must avoid eating foods that might remain trapped in the surgical site and cause infections.

Dental extractions leave a temporary hole in the mouth that requires several weeks or months to heal. Therefore caring for the extraction site and the blood-clot formation is essential. Practices like drinking with a straw, smoking, and consuming alcohol interfere with healing. However, with proper care and keeping the area clean, besides getting sufficient rest and accelerate recovery.

If you must have teeth removed for the reasons described earlier, Heavenly Smiles Dentist can help you with the removal using minimally invasive techniques. The practice also provides comprehensive instructions on your recovery to help you get back to regular activities as soon as possible. Therefore consult with the practice before contacting any other dentist near you.

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