Tooth Extractions are generally the last resort for teeth that cannot otherwise get repaired. When root canals are no longer an option or a chip or crack is bad enough that the whole tooth is going to get lost, sometimes all that you can do is have your tooth extracted. Tooth Extractions are also sometimes the only option if the tooth is impacting the oral health of the other teeth surrounding it.
Reasons That Teeth Get Extracted
There are a variety of different reasons that teeth end up getting extracted. From overcrowding to severe decay or cracks/chips that damage teeth, there are a variety of reasons why teeth will end up having to get removed. Frequently, removing one tooth helps save the health of all the other teeth in the surrounding area.
Teeth can end up being overcrowded which can result in teeth having to get extracted before they impact the health of other teeth within the mouth. Rather than having all of the teeth pushed out of place, sometimes it’s best to allow one tooth to get removed and the rest will.
If a tooth has decayed or become damaged enough through a chip or crack it also may have to be removed. Wisdom teeth often come in at an odd angle or in the wrong place and will have to be removed, so they don’t impact the health of the other teeth in the person’s mouth.
Damaged and Decayed
If a tooth is damaged or decayed and is beyond repair, then the only other option may be to remove the tooth altogether. Damage can include chips and cracks that can break the tooth down past repair. Decay comes from infections that don’t get treated in an appropriate time frame. Frequently, these infections infiltrate the gums and even the bone beneath the tooth and cause long term problems that require removal of the entire tooth.
Wisdom Teeth will usually grow in between ages 17 and 21. These teeth will sometimes never even break through the gum line and other times they will grow in slanted or crooked and impact other teeth. In these cases, sometimes the wisdom teeth need to be removed to prevent overcrowding and issues with the other teeth in the mouth.
Types of Tooth Extractions
There are two main types of tooth extractions that you will encounter will fall into one of two categories:
A simple removal is the kind of extraction that a dentist does when they give you Novocaine and remove the tooth with forceps. They work the tooth lose from the fibers and roots below and pull it by rocking the tooth back and forth until it becomes loose enough to pluck out. It’s generally a painless process as Novocaine numbs the area so you won’t feel the tooth getting extracted.
Surgical Extractions are the other type of extractions where a tooth gets pulled while the person is under light sedation. This form of sedation is generally necessary when the teeth are still impacted such as wisdom teeth or the molar may not have ruptured through the gum line but will come in at the wrong angle and cause other problems if it’s allowed to grow in fully.
These extractions are outpatient procedures, yet a generally done under the sedation, so the patient doesn’t feel pain or discomfort while the procedure is going on. It also allows the dentist to work more freely in the mouth without the human reflexes getting in the way.
Pain Management After Extractions
Pain management after extractions will generally include your dentist recommending that you take some form or either prescription or over-the-counter painkiller for several days to help ease the pain. Icing your cheeks and jaw around the area where the tooth was extracted for 20-30 minutes at a time several times per day can help reduce the swelling. An ice pack wrapped in a cloth or even a bag of frozen vegetables can work as an ice pack.
If you experience pain for more than a few days or the pain is excruciating and doesn’t recede, talk to your dentist as you may have an infection or another condition such as dry socket that needs to get treated.
Healing Aftercare Information
Besides managing your pain, you will want to bite on gauze for 30 to 45 minutes after your procedure to help the incision develop a clot. Once a clot gets developed avoid drinking alcohol, chewing tobacco, smoking, or chewing hard foods in that area of your mouth for several days to so that you don’t pull the blood clot out once it forms. You should also avoid drinking out of straws or chewing gum, mints, or other hard candies for several days as well.
You will generally want to avoid eating on the part of the mouth where the tooth gets removed for several days. Chewing on the other side of your mouth allows the extraction site time to heal. Avoiding very hot or cold foods can help keep the area around the tooth from being “shocked” by the temperature of food which is likely to hurt when it hits the surface. Avoiding extremely hot and spicy foods or hard/chewy foods for a few days is advisable. Talk to your dentist for specific foods that you can enjoy eating while you’re healing from your extraction.
Following all of your dentist’s instructions for recovery will help you get back on your feet and feeling better within a few days.
If you properly manage the area around your tooth extraction site, you should generally experience discomfort for a few days after you have a tooth extraction. If you experience worsening pain for more than a few days to a week after your extraction, visit your dentist to make sure that no complications are occurring where the tooth gets extracted.
At Esthetix Dental SPA we are committed to ensuring that you are receiving the best quality care possible. For further assistance, please feel free to contact us at Esthetix Dental SPA to set up an appointment today and see if you have a tooth that needs an extraction or to get any other treatments you may need to ensure your oral health is in line for the future.