Q. I got two teeth extracted eight weeks ago but still have shooting pain. Why?

Answered by
Dr. Krishna Swaroop Achanta
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sushrutha Muralidharan
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 03, 2021 and last reviewed on: Aug 25, 2021

Hi doctor,

I get intermittent shooting pain in my lower jaw right-hand side. It only started after two teeth extractions and a dry socket. The pain comes suddenly and lasts for few seconds without any pattern. Sometimes I get a few one after the other, and other times it is just one shooting pain. It is a sharp pain, not electrical or throbbing. The pain started about eight weeks ago. Kindly give your opinion.



Welcome to

As you already have a history of a dry socket and extracted teeth, your sharp shooting pain should have subsided long back technically. A dry socket usually creates dull throbbing pain. You do not need to worry. It might not be a TMJ (tempro-mandibular joint) disorder or a sinus infection if you have never had such a history previously. It also might be a form of neuralgia, the most common condition being trigeminal neuralgia which causes shooting pain, usually in the lower jaw nerve. But the differential diagnosis of this condition can vary too. You do not need to panic as your maxillofacial surgeon will ensure he addresses your issue non surgically. Treatment for trigeminal neuralgia may be a combination of anticonvulsant medications and painkillers for a few days, dependent on the extent of unilateral pain you have. I recommend that until you get physically checked by your surgeon, you need to follow some immediate precautions to stop worsening the symptoms.

Firstly rinse with warm salt water several times a day, five to six times atleast. Take a painkiller only when you have intense or severe pain. Observe the statistics of pain and its modulations but don't keep popping the painkillers every now and then. Avoid painkillers till your physician recommends them after diagnosis of your condition. Rinse your mouth morning after brushing and at night with 0.12% Chlorhexidine solution. Also, start taking antioxidant tablets or Vitamin C rich foods once a day as recommended by your physician to prevent soft tissue infections.

I would refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon who can diagnose your condition after not just checking the oral cavity but mainly the facial muscles and Temporomandibular joint as well. I suggest you get CT (computer tomography) scan done. I hope this was helpful. Please get back if you have any further queries.

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