Removing Damaged Or Impacted Teeth
with Tooth Extractions
Teeth that are extensively decayed or infected, or which have lost a substantial part of the natural structure cannot always be saved and need removing. Other times, we may recommend tooth extraction in preparation for orthodontic treatment, creating enough room so your teeth can be moved into the correct positions. Partially erupted or impacted wisdom teeth can also cause problems, in which case we will recommend their extraction. Sometimes baby teeth may not fall out naturally and prevent the adult teeth from coming through and need extracting.
Tooth extraction may be necessary due to tooth decay, crooked or worn down teeth, and problematic or impacted wisdom teeth.
Wisdom Teeth and Impacted Wisdom Tooth Extraction
Partial eruption or complete impaction of the wisdom teeth usually happens when there is lack of space in the mouth or the teeth are not in an upright position. Impacted teeth fail to emerge at the exact position and become trapped in the jawbone and gums. This can lead to unexpected pain and may result in infections.
A careful review of your dental history and X-rays allows us to determine the condition of impacted wisdom teeth. After a thorough examination, if wisdom teeth are found to be problematic, an early extraction may be suggested to avoid further problems.
Extraction procedures may create minor pain, swelling and bleeding. And we may prescribe antibiotic treatment to control infection, swelling and discomfort. We also provide you with instructions and tips on how to take care of yourself at home.
Types of Tooth Extraction
Depending on the condition of your teeth, extraction is performed in two ways — simple tooth extraction or surgical tooth extraction.
In simple tooth extraction teeth are usually visible and can be easily accessed while using local anesthesia. Elevators and forceps are used to grab the visible portion of a tooth to expand the hole where it is lodged. Once the hole gets widened adequately, the tooth can be pulled out easily.
Surgical removal of teeth is more complex and is performed when teeth cannot be easily accessed because either they have only partially erupted or have broken down underneath the gum line. After adequate local anesthesia, the soft tissues and bone are cut to reach the teeth. A special drill is used to remove the adjacent bone tissues. To make the removal process easier, the tooth may need to be split into pieces.
Alternatives to Tooth Extraction
We carefully examine the condition of the tooth in question and will suggest the most appropriate treatments for you. If the tooth can be saved with a simple restoration or a root canal treatment, we will most definitely encourage a treatment that will save your natural tooth.
At Gentle Dental, we review your dental history and take x-rays to carefully observe the condition of impacted or potentially impacted wisdom teeth. After a thorough examination, if wisdom teeth are found to be problematic, an early extraction may be suggested to avoid further problems.
Wisdom tooth extraction procedures may create minor pain, swelling and bleeding, but discomfort is generally short-lived. After the extraction, we may prescribe antibiotic treatment to control infection, and will also provide you with instructions to diminish swelling and discomfort.
Why Tooth Extraction is Recommended?
Our dentists will carefully assess the tooth before recommending the most suitable treatments. Sometimes teeth can be saved and restored with dental fillings or crowns; an infected tooth can frequently be saved with root canal treatment. If we think there is a good chance that we can save your natural tooth, we will encourage you to pursue this treatment.When deciding if removal is the best option, we review your dental history and take digital dental x-rays to assess the condition of the tooth more fully. These x-rays show the extent of any damage to the tooth root, including infection and decay. Often, a damaged or infected tooth is painful, and removing it will relieve this discomfort and prevent further damage to the bone around the tooth.
When is Tooth Extraction Urgent?
Will I Need My Wisdom Teeth Removed?
We carefully monitor the position of wisdom teeth yet to erupt with regular digital dental x-rays. These x-rays show us the exact location of the tooth and its orientation, allowing us to determine if the wisdom tooth can erupt without affecting the adjacent teeth. When examining the condition of wisdom teeth, we often take a panoramic x-ray, showing your entire jaw and which helps us to assess the health of other teeth nearby, your sinuses and your jawbone.We only recommend the removal of wisdom teeth when it is clear they cannot erupt without causing problems. Often an early removal is preferable to help avoid future issues.
Why Do Wisdom Teeth Cause Problems?
What to Expect During a Tooth Extraction?
When removing a tooth, we take every precaution to make sure the entire procedure is as comfortable and as problem-free as possible. We thoroughly numb the tooth using local anesthetic before we remove it. A straightforward tooth extraction where the tooth is visible is usually very quick. Once the tooth is numb, we use special tools to carefully loosen the tooth, allowing us to pull it out easily.When a tooth isn’t visible in the mouth or is only partially erupted, for example, wisdom teeth, removal is more complex. After numbing the area, we create a small opening in the jawbone to access the tooth. Often the tooth is sectioned or cut into smaller pieces, so removal is easier and more comfortable.
After tooth extraction, we either close the empty socket with stitches or leave it open to heal naturally. When an empty socket is left open, a blood clot quickly develops on the surface and protects the socket during healing.
If you require a more complicated surgery to remove a tooth, we may recommend sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry can also be useful when multiple teeth need extracting.
What is Socket Preservation for a Dental Implant?
What to Expect After Tooth Extraction?
It’s perfectly normal to experience some discomfort after tooth extraction. Common side effects include minor pain and discomfort, slight bleeding, and swelling. If you only have a single tooth removed, your recovery should be quite quick, and you will most likely be able to continue with normal activities the next day. If multiple teeth removed, you may need a little longer to recover fully.We will give you detailed information on how to manage your recovery, including advice on which foods to eat and taking painkillers to minimize discomfort and swelling. If needed, we will prescribe antibiotics. Some people find it helpful to use ice packs or moist heat during the first 48 hours after tooth extraction and which can help to reduce swelling and bruising. Using a warm salt water rinse can also aid healing.
It’s important to follow our instructions closely and especially for keeping the socket as clean as possible during healing. Avoid eating foods that could become stuck in the socket and avoid dislodging the blood clot protecting the socket. You mustn’t smoke while the socket heals because the sucking action could dislodge the blood clot. For the same reason, avoid using drinking straws.
Possible Complications after Tooth Extraction?
What is Dry Socket?
Usually, the empty socket is protected with a blood clot, but this can become dislodged. When this happens, the socket may become infected. Signs of an infection include increasing pain and discomfort, noticing a nasty taste, or developing bad breath. We can easily treat dry socket, cleaning out the empty socket, and placing a dressing to help it heal more quickly. However, it does slow down the overall healing process slightly.We perform many tooth extractions every year, and our dentists are highly skilled in this process. After tooth extraction, we are here to help you and to answer all your questions. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you need further information on how to look after your mouth after tooth extraction or are in any way concerned.
Our dentists here at Gentle Dental can discuss all the tooth extraction options suitable for your situation and will explain the possible pros and cons of each choice. As with any treatment we provide, we make sure you have all the information necessary for an informed treatment choice. For more information about the tooth extraction for a dental implants or wisdom teeth removal, contact Gentle Dental at (718) 461-0100.