Can I Pull My Own Wisdom Tooth?

Written & Reviewed by Dr David Chen

If you’re thinking about pulling your own wisdom tooth you should stop right now. There is no dentist in the world nor any healthcare professional for that matter who would condone such a behavior.

tooth extraction cartoon

Do you really need us to list the reasons why you shouldn’t do it? We’ll happily oblige.

You’ve no training nor qualifications

Not to point out the obvious but you don’t know what you’re doing because you’ve no training whatsoever. Dental school is an additional four years on top of undergrad and then there is residency training after that.

If you’re nervous about a young looking dentist who recently graduated pulling out your wisdom tooth… what do you think about someone with zero experience? At least the new dentist has some sort of idea of what they’re doing!

You don’t know how to clean out the infection

It’s not just about taking out the tooth because if your wisdom tooth is infected, you’ll need to clean out the infection. The only way to do that is with a small instrument called a spoon excavator. You literally place it into the socket and scoop out the infection and granulation tissue.

You don’t have access to that so even if you pull your own wisdom tooth, the infection will remain. You’ll most likely remain swollen even after the tooth comes out.

Wisdom teeth are the hardest teeth to take out

The wisdom teeth (third molars) are the toughest teeth to remove. They’re located at the farthest depths in the mouth and they also tend to be impacted.

The combination of those two will deter a lot of general dentists from even attempting to remove them. More often than not, they get referred out to the oral surgeons who are the specialists at extracting wisdom teeth.

If your regular dentist doesn’t even want to do it, why would you even try on your own?

cartoon diagram of full thickness gum flap
Credit: Lapointe dental centres

Last but not least, the impacted wisdom teeth do need to be surgically removed. They’re often still stuck underneath the gums which means you’ll need a scalpel to cut through the gums to reach it. Afterwards you’d need some wisdom teeth stitches which you don’t have access to…

Are you ready to cut through your own gums?

It will be extremely painful

You don’t have access to any local anesthesia like novocaine, lidocaine, and articaine. That means you will be attempting the surgical removal of your own tooth while you’re not numb.

Can you imagine how painful that would be? Do you recall undergoing a dental procedure such as a filling or crown where you weren’t completely numb? It hurt a lot didn’t it? Now do you really want to try pulling your own wisdom tooth with no anesthesia at all?

Before you go thinking you can just use orajel… while it does help reduce the discomfort, it does not numb the tooth nerve. Evidence of that is your dentist actually uses the generic version of orajel as the pre-numbing gel. After that they go in with the actual injection. Just in case you forgot, that injection still hurt even with the orajel. Need I say more?

Do you even know what to do for the aftercare?

There are a lot of instructions that you need to follow after having the wisdom tooth tooth. We call all of these the aftercare which is just as important as taking out the tooth.

Here are some of the main dos and don’ts:

  • No rinsing
  • No spitting
  • No drinking through a straw
  • No smoking
  • You need to bite on gauze to stop the bleeding.
  • Possibly take antibiotics.

You’re going to need to find some gauze which you probably can at the pharmacy… Although how will you obtain antibiotics?


Honestly, it’s just not a good idea to even attempt this. Why don’t you just look for a local dentist and have them do it for you? It’ll be easier and less painful.


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Long Island City, NY 11101

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Our purpose at afterva, is to encourage you to seek in person care with a doctor. It's not meant to be a substitute for medical advice.

A lot of nuances cannot be detected without an in-person clinical exam, which means it is near impossible to diagnose and treat virtually.

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