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What You Need to Know Before Taking any Tooth Extraction Pain Medication

Vanilla ice cream is not the only pain reliever dentists prescribe after a tooth extraction (though it’s the tastiest one). Tooth extraction can cause severe pain up until even a week after the procedure. Therefore, dentists usually prescribe a combination of two tooth extraction pain medications to alleviate the same. If you experience extreme pain in an inconvenient time, you can call for home doctors to attend to your medical emergency.

The most common combination is that of acetaminophen (APAP) and an opioid such as Percocet or Tylenol 3. However, if a dentist prescribes an opioid medication, be very sure that he/she has a good reason. If not Opioids, what kind of alternative tooth extraction pain medications can dentists prescribe?

The combination of Ibuprofen and acetaminophen (APAP) is working well for most people and is being prescribed by many dentists nowadays. Naproxen is another medication that can be used effectively against tooth extraction pain. These are over the counter drugs which do not need a prescription.

Why are Opioids bad?

tooth extraction pain medicationOpioids can be addictive. According to a study covered in JAMA, even a small dosage can lead to subsequent use within 3 months to 1 year, especially in young adults.  Young adults who are addicted to Opioids may in turn share with peers, leading to opioid abuse among teenagers.

Most tooth extraction pain is easily alleviated through Ibuprofen or Naproxen. Only if the pain is unbearable because the extracted tooth was deeply buried in a bone or was difficult to extract, should an Opioid be prescribed?

If you believe that you do not need an Opioid as a pain medication, please inform your dentist and ask for an alternative immediately.  If your dentists have prescribed an Opioid medication to your son or daughter who is a young adult, make sure that opioid medication is really required. You can specifically ask your dentist to prescribe non-opioid medications. After all, the ultimate tool for handling tooth extraction pain effectively is to be aware!

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