Is An Extraction Really Needed?
A lot of times a tooth can be repaired by a root canal if it has been affected by decay or other types of tooth damage. However, if the extent of damage is too great, then the dentist may not have any choice but to remove the tooth completely by extracting it.
Why Do Teeth Need to be Removed?
Wisdom teeth are one of the most well-known reasons for unavoidable removal, but they are not the only one. Teeth that are severely damaged or decayed we usually try to treat first with crowns and other procedures, but if the damage is too extensive then we may opt for extraction. We might also remove a tooth if misalignment is causing crowding problems or preventing other teeth from coming in.
Preparing for an Extraction
Prior to a tooth being removed, a complete review of your dental history will be conducted by the dentist as well as obtaining x-rays of your teeth. The x-rays will tell the dentist what the tooth looks like prior to the extraction so that they have the best method available to make the extraction a success. If the extraction is not possible, then an oral surgeon referral will be made. As you are prepped for your extraction you will receive an anesthetic locally. In terms of a tooth being impacted an oral surgeon may opt for another general form of anesthesia such as general anesthesia and you will be asleep throughout the procedure. When this happens, you will need to have a designated driver take you home to recover.
What is the Removal Process Like?
There are two types of tooth removals, simple and surgical. Which one we decide to use will depend on the condition of the tooth and surrounding area. Simple extractions are performed on teeth that can easily be seen. Surgical extractions are a more intricate procedure required for teeth that are partially or wholly concealed.
Both types of extraction are typically fast and straightforward procedures that rarely take much more than half an hour per tooth. More teeth can mean a longer operation. Local anesthesia is preferred so you will not feel any pain, but there will be a lot of pressure, though it is not usually uncomfortable. There will also be loud noises that many patients report disliking, so we recommend that you bring headphones with you so you can listen to music during the procedure.
I’ve Had A Tooth Removed, Now What?
Once your extraction is complete, you will be provided with instructions detailing the care you need to take for the extraction. Out of all of the instructions, it is important that you keep the area clean at all times so that any infection can be eliminated.
You will need to maintain gauze on the site so that pressure can be maintained for at least half an hour. You may receive additional instructions such as sustaining from smoking, cleaning teeth next to the extraction site, or rinsing your mouth out.
Experiencing pain at the extraction site will be expected as well as some discomfort as the anesthesia wears off. If that is the case, then you may be prescribed a pain reliever as needed. You can also conduct home pain relief remedies such as ice packs to help decrease inflammation. It is also a good idea to stay away from straws and hot fluid.
Recovery usually only takes a few days. For the first couple of days, opt for soft foods like ice cream and yogurt, and gradually add back in more foods. It is also a good idea to switch to a less strenuous, lower-impact exercise routine for at least a week following a removal. If the pain lasts longer than a few days, or if you have a fever, swelling, severe pain, or start leaking pus from the incision site, then contact us immediately.
Remove Your Pain, Rejuvenate Your Smile!
Removing a tooth might always be an option of last resort, but here at Cooley Smiles, Silver Lake, we make it easy and painless! We are also committed to offering you the full scope of restorative treatments such as dental implants, in addition to regular dental exams to improve and maintain your oral health.
We’re looking forward to meeting you and showing you how simple a tooth extraction can be, so give us a call today at (425) 249-3509!