90 Second Wisdom Tooth Extraction Video

This post, featuring an HD video of a wisdom tooth extraction, is different from many previous posts. Instead of tackling a topic and answering questions via the written word, this post uses a YouTube video to answer questions regarding one of the more feared and dreaded procedures in all of dentistry: wisdom teeth removal.

This video was shot in my office and features a young, early 20s patient having a lower right impacted wisdom tooth removed under IV sedation. The third molar and sedation procedures are performed by me along with two assistants. Check it out here:

Having participated in the filming of dental procedures before, I will tell you that capturing high quality video footage is not easy. Camera angle, proper lighting, patient participation, etc. are all difficult to control. I can confidently say that this is very high quality video footage of a third molar extraction (click here to go directly to the video on YouTube).

This video does answer many questions and resolve many myths that I’ve seen in blog comments and in questions I’ve received over years of private practice. Let’s review them.

Does getting a wisdom tooth extracted hurt?
  • No. In the YouTube video, the patient was given local anesthesia (a.k.a. novocaine) beforehand. She does not flinch nor respond during the procedure. That is because she is numb and is also under twilight sedation.
Does the dentist have to put a knee on my chest to pull the tooth?
  • No. That is a popular myth that I debunked in this post. Extraction of a tooth requires the controlled, precise application of force. It rarely requires a pulling force. The tooth literally slides up and out of the socket – as you can see at the 2:00 mark of the video.
Will I be in pain for days after getting my wisdom tooth out?
  • Not necessarily. Each and every case is different. In this video, the extraction itself only took 90 seconds. So she had very little pain afterwards. Other third molars require more time and are more invasive. Those will likely be more painful afterwards.
What is an impacted tooth?
  • An impacted tooth is when bone, gums, and/or other structures prevent the tooth from coming into the mouth properly. Wisdom teeth are frequently impacted. In the YouTubevideo, we see a soft tissue impacted tooth, meaning that there was a flap of gum tissue preventing the tooth from coming in properly. Other teeth are considered bony impactions in which there is bone preventing the tooth from coming in completely. Bony impaction extractions are typically more invasive.

I hope you enjoyed the video and it helped to answer questions and dispel some myths. Comments are welcome.


  1. Ann Lobello says

    Dr. calcaterra, has it been your experience that after the removal of a lower wisdom tooth the corresponding upper tooth will move down to try to meet the lower gum in time? I’m thinking of having my wisdom tooth pulled rather than going through a root canal. So far I have to two different opinions about this. What do you say? Thanks.

    • Ann,
      Excellent question. Generally speaking, if your lower wisdom tooth is removed, it is likely the opposing tooth (if still present) will slowly move downwards. This will likely result in the patient biting either the gums directly below the descending tooth or the actual inside of the cheek. It can take a couple of years or more to occur. I would say that in my experience, this happens MOST of the time. Hope this helps.

  2. Dr Pimple Popper has nothing on you! That was great, thanks for sharing.

  3. I have a porcelain fused to metal crown on #14. It was placed 30 years ago by the dentist I worked for at the time. I recently was told it has decay around lingual edge. How is it determined if it needs extraction, or if it can be repaired on the decay site, or if crown can be removed and built up for another crown? What should I look for on the xray? I know it doesn’t involve the root. I feel extraction was a quick referral and no other option was given.

    • Thank you Dr Calcatterra , I have a better understanding of crown decay after reading your other pages. I appreciate your honest and unbiased answers. Last question, does open decay cause nausea or any other digestion issues?

    • Bee,
      Lingual Decay is not always visible on the x-ray. Your dentist likely felt the decay was deep and went under the gums. When the decay goes deep and under the gums, it is likely the tooth cannot be restored. You can always get a second opinion.