The Ultimate FAQ Guide to Tooth Extraction

Who performs dental extractions?

Dental extractions are usually performed by a general dentist, a dentist with surgical expertise, or an oral surgeon.

What Are the Benefits of Tooth Extraction?

Tooth extraction can help prevent infection. Many patients have periodic tooth infections that do not go away on their own. These infections can be serious and can lead to recurring infections and can damage bone and tissue. Extracting a tooth can also help free up space for reconstruction. Toothaches are incredibly painful and removing a decaying tooth is the fastest way to recovery and pain relief.

Why Do I Need an Extraction?

A tooth may need to be extracted as a result of advanced tooth decay or infection. Infection can quickly spread to surrounding teeth if the tooth is not removed. Tooth extraction may also be necessary if a tooth becomes weak due to gum disease, or if the tooth has developed extensive damage, such as a fracture or breakage..

Overcrowding is another reason why you might need a tooth extraction. Whether your upper and lower jaw overlap, or you don’t have enough space in your mouth.

Broken teeth can also require extraction if the structure, roots, and nerves beneath the teeth are severely damaged.

What Happens During Tooth Extraction?

The first thing we do is apply a local anesthetic. Next, we’ll cut away the gum and bone around the tooth so there is enough for the forceps to grip onto. Lastly, we’ll use the forceps to rock the tooth until it is released from the bone. In more serious cases, a stronger anesthetic will be used to put the patient to sleep for a short period of time. If this is the case, you shouldn’t have to worry about any pain or discomfort during the procedure. The process of removing a single tooth can take anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes. Once the tooth is extracted, our dentists will clean the open space where the tooth was and close it up.

Will It Hurt?

It is normal to feel some pain after the anesthesia wears off. For 24 hours after having a tooth pulled, you should also expect some swelling and residual bleeding. However, if either bleeding or pain is still severe more than four hours after your tooth is pulled, you should call your dentist.

What To Expect Afterward?

Following an extraction, your dentist will send you home to recover. Recovery normally takes a few days. The initial healing period usually takes about 1 to 2 weeks. New bone and gum tissue will grow into the gap. Over time, however, having a tooth (or teeth) missing can cause your teeth to shift, which will affect your bite and make it difficult to chew. Your dentist may recommend filling the missing space with a replacement tooth.

What Can You Do to Promote Gum Healing Speed Up the Healing Time?

  • Take pain relievers.
  • Use ice packs to reduce swelling.
  • Use saline water to rinse of the gum.
  • Don’t use a straw to avoid breaking the blood clot.
  • Elevate the head to stop bleeding.
  • Eat foods that require less chewing.
  • Brush and floss your teeth as you normally do, but avoid the site.
  • Limit activity for 24 to 48 hours.

What Are My Options For Replacing a Missing Tooth?

A dental implant is the best option for replacing a single missing tooth or several teeth in different areas of your mouth. This treatment involves surgically mounting a titanium post or frame into your upper or lower jaw. A replacement tooth is then attached to the implant, which allows for a permanent solution to a missing tooth. A dental implant will last for decades or even a lifetime with proper care.

A fixed dental bridge is a tooth replacement option if you are missing one or more teeth in the same area. A fixed dental bridge basically bridges the gap caused by a missing tooth using a dental prosthetic or artificial tooth. The prosthetic is adhered to adjacent teeth using dental cement. Bridges are a great option because they look and feel like natural teeth. Also, they are more affordable than dental implants.

Your dentist may suggest a complete set of dentures if you need to replace all of your teeth. If you only need to replace some of your teeth, you might be a candidate for a removable partial denture. Removable partial dentures look and feel like natural teeth, and they are also less expensive and more comfortable to repair and replace than other placement options.