Even if your tooth extraction is simple and straightforward, there is a chance of complications. One of the more serious complications is tooth extraction infection, a painful condition that can lead to sepsis. Worldwide, sepsis is fatal in a third of the people who contract it, with survivors sometimes suffering lasting health issues that include PTSD and chronic pain. Don’t let it go that far. Here are eight signs of tooth extraction infection (and what to do about them!).

What types of tooth extraction infection can occur?

You may undergo a simple tooth extraction or a surgical tooth extraction.

In a simple extraction, your tooth is clear from other teeth and not anchored to the jawbone. Your dentist can extract and remove the tooth with dental pliers. They’ll perform this procedure when you’re under local anesthetic. Since it’s simpler, complications are rare.

A surgical extraction is much more complicated and can vary from patient to patient. Your dentist will need to cut into the gum, again under local anesthetic (and sometimes general anesthesia if needed).

Once the gum is opened, the tooth may have to be removed in sections from the top, or another incision may be necessary in the side of the gum. This allows your dentist access to the tooth’s roots for loosening and easier removal. After the tooth is extracted, your dentist will clean the extraction site and stitch it closed.

Tooth extraction is a very common procedure, but for both types of extraction, infection is a possibility.

Simple and surgical tooth extraction rely heavily on a post-procedure blood clot to