Losing a tooth is common. A study done by the American College of Prosthodontists found that up to 120 million Americans are missing at least one tooth. However, while tooth loss is a common occurrence, sometimes a tooth does need to be extracted in our office. A dental extraction occurs when we remove a tooth from the socket (also known as the “dental alveolus”). While we here at Mor Smiles may try to take measures to help prevent the loss of a tooth (such as fillings, crowns, or other treatment options), unfortunately, there are some occasions where the tooth may not be salvaged and does need to be removed. In these instances, an extraction may be necessary.
Common Reasons For a Dental Extraction
There are many different reasons that a tooth may need to be removed. For instance, if the patient has severe tooth decay that cannot be treated by a filling or any other restoration, then the only option may be to extract the tooth. Impaction (which occurs when the tooth does not properly break through the gums) may lead to extraction, too. This is pretty common for wisdom teeth. We may also remove a tooth if the patient has advanced gum disease (“periodontitis”) and the infection has caused the tooth root to be infected or the tooth to become loose. If the patient has sustained an accident that has damaged the tooth, then we may also advise removal of the tooth. We may also recommend an extraction if your teeth are crowded or you are about to undergo orthodontic treatment.
Types of Dental Extractions
There are two common types of dental extractions. A simple dental extraction is what it sounds like: if we are able to remove the tooth without the aid of general anesthesia, then we will typically perform a simple dental extraction. This is typically necessary in cases of advanced tooth decay, a broken tooth, or if the tooth has become loose due to periodontal disease. However, if the tooth is impacted, broken, or requires a more complex removal, then you may be a candidate for a surgical extraction. In these cases, then general anesthesia may be necessary.
Aftercare for a dental extraction can vary, and we will advise you on how to care for the site after the tooth is extracted. Discomfort is fairly common afterward, and it can be addressed with over-the-counter pain relievers. If you notice any signs of infection or ongoing pain after the procedure, we may request you come in for a follow-up appointment. We may also make recommendations on prosthetic options for your smile after the extraction, allowing you to smile with both confidence and ease after your procedure.
No matter the reason for your dental extraction, it is our goal to help make sure you are comfortable throughout the entire procedure - not only afterward, but before and during, too. If you would like to learn more about dental extractions, or you are ready to schedule your routine dental exam, please do not hesitate to call us here at Mor Smiles at 223-258-5088 today.