The pain after the extraction of a tooth normally begins to decrease four hours after the procedure, according to WebMD. Immediately after the extraction, the anesthetic keeps pain in control. Dentists often suggest over-the-counter medication or write a prescription for pain medication.
Dry socket is a common complication of dental extractions, according to The Merck Manual Home Edition. With dry socket, the pain seems to improve for a few days but becomes much worse suddenly. This pain gets better in about two weeks, but a dentist is able to reduce the patient's suffering by packing the socket with gauze soaked in anesthetic.