Tooth Extractions: What to Expect
While the prospect may be daunting, a tooth extraction is a straightforward routine procedure with a low risk of long-term complications. If performed by an experienced dentist or surgeon, the process is painless, and the recovery process is usually simple as well.
Causes for Tooth Extraction
While it is ideal in most cases to preserve your natural tooth, in some cases your dentist will recommend extracting one or more teeth to protect your overall health and well-being. One of the most common extractions is wisdom teeth. There are a variety of reasons a tooth may need to be removed. Severe decay can damage a tooth beyond saving, teeth may be impacted or malfunctioning, or may cause crowding and damage to surrounding teeth.
A dentist may also recommend extraction for impacted teeth, malfunctioning teeth or teeth that are hard to clean, such as the wisdom teeth. Removal of wisdom teeth can prevent crowding and may also be more prone to causing inflammation or infection if they do not fully emerge.
Most tooth extractions are uneventful procedures that take almost no time at all. If he hasn’t done so already, your dentist will take x-rays of your teeth. The area around the tooth being extracted will be numbed, and nitrous oxide may be administered to help reduce anxiety during the procedure. You will feel some pressure during the extraction, but not any pain. In most cases a tooth can be removed using only applied pressure to the socket with dental forceps. Only in complicated situations will surgical measures be needed.
If multiple teeth are being removed or you have a tooth that requires surgery to extract, you may be put under full sedation. You will be given intravenous anesthesia, preventing pain throughout your body. You will not have any memory of the procedure and will feel as though you have slept through the experience.
You will be given a very specific set of instructions for caring for the extraction site immediately after a tooth is removed. Gauze will be applied to the extraction site to minimize bleeding, and will need to be changed every so often to avoid soaking through.
Depending on the details of your extraction, you may also be prescribed pain relievers to help cope the first few days after your procedure. Keep the extraction site clean and follow all directions your dentist gives you to ensure the gums heal quickly and without complication or infection. Once you have healed, one of the dentists at Larwin Square Dentistry can replace the missing tooth with a bridge, denture, or dental implant.
If you are experiencing a toothache or have been told that you need a tooth extracted, you want to make sure you get the best care available. If you are in Tustin, we invite you to call us with any questions you may have. You can set an appointment with us to take care of your dental needs by calling (714) 505-9462.