When a tooth has experienced severe trauma or loss of structure a full tooth extraction may be required. This procedure is often reserved as the last option when further repair cannot be done, to help create additional space when teeth are crowded, or to prevent serious infection or discomfort.
A tooth extraction involves permanent removal of a tooth from the gums and tooth socket. When required the procedure can benefit the future of your oral health.
Why Perform Tooth Extraction?
There are a number of main reasons why a tooth extraction may be required which include:
- A crowded mouth: When there are too many teeth pushing into an area and causing cosmetic or bite issues. This motive is commonly used in preparation for orthodontics.
- Gum disease: When extreme gum disease results in gums no longer being able to support nearby teeth a tooth extraction may be required to prevent an infection from spreading.
- Damage or severe decay: If you do not regularly brush and floss your teeth they can decay beyond repair and require extraction. Alternatively, in the event of an accident where a tooth is broken it may be necessary to completely remove a tooth and replace it with a prosthetic rather than repair it.
What Does Tooth Extraction Involve?
A typical tooth extraction will have the patient numbed under a local anesthetic. General anesthetic may be required when multiple teeth or a lengthy removal process is needed. This is generally a routine procedure that is safe and will only require a few stitches and/or antibiotics to reduce the likelihood of infection.
Forceps are used to grab the teeth and on occasion a scalpel or other dentistry tools may be used to cut into the gum and supporting bone to speed extraction.
Benefits of Tooth Extraction
Extraction is often one of the most affordable solutions when a tooth is severely damaged. It can also be used to correct the position of teeth and reduce additional dental work and costs when teeth have been damaged and multiple caps or ongoing fillings will be required.
Before and After Your Tooth Extraction
- Have someone drive you to and from the procedure so that you don’t take unnecessary risks associated with driving afterwards, especially if you’ve been sedated with general anesthesia.
- After your tooth extraction procedure you will want to relax and limit activity.
- Speak with your dentist about icing and other precautions you can take to reduce swelling and pain.
- Be sure not to smoke, use straws or rinse as this can potentially lead to stitches popping or infection.
- Take antibiotics if they are prescribed to you as this will prevent infection.
- Keep up regular flossing and brushing as this will also reduce the risk of infection.
- Do not eat hard foods as this can damage stitches.
- Avoid chewing in the spot of extraction until you are fully healed.
Contact Westend Dental today to schedule an appointment if you suspect a tooth extraction might be necessary. Your dental professional will let you know what your options are before scheduling further appointments to fix your damaged teeth, crowded mouth or relieve associated discomfort.