Dental extraction relates to the process of removing a tooth from its socket. There are several reasons why this may be necessary.
When Is A Dental Extraction Necessary?
Dental extraction is the best option if you have extensive decay or when repairs with a filling or a crown are in futility.
Periodontal disease may leave you with teeth that are not supported by enough bone, and such need to be removed as well.
If radiation work is needed, any teeth in the field of radiation should be removed for those receiving radiation to the head or neck. Removing some teeth to create room for those being moved into place is required for anyone getting braces.
Crowding of teeth, failure to respond to root canal treatment, and trauma, are some other reasons that may necessitate the removal of teeth. In the case of crowding, an orthodontist may recommend extraction before the start of orthodontic treatment. Awkward positioning of wisdom teeth as they grow demands removal as well.
What Happens During A Dental Extraction?
There are two principal types of removal: surgical and simple tooth extractions. The latter entails a simple procedure to remove a tooth that is visible in the mouth. A dentist will use an elevator to loosen the affected tooth, and forceps are used to remove the tooth from the socket.
A surgical extraction is complicated and is commonly done by oral surgeons if your tooth has not come in yet or is broken at the gum line. The process entails making a small incision in your gum or cutting the tooth in half and removing the bone around it where necessary, to get it off.
After Tooth Extraction
After the tooth extraction, it’s important for a blood clot to form to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. Bite on a gauze pad for 30-45 minutes immediately after the appointment. If the bleeding or oozing still persists, place another gauze pad and bite firmly for another 30 minutes. You may have to do this several times to staunch the flow of blood.
After the blood clot forms, it is important to not disturb or dislodge the clot. Do not rinse vigorously, suck on straws, smoke, drink alcohol or brush teeth next to the extraction site for 72 hours. These activities may dislodge or dissolve the clot and hinder the healing process. Limit vigorous exercise for the next 24 hours, as this increases blood pressure and may cause more bleeding from the extraction site.
After the tooth is extracted you may feel some pain and experience some swelling. An ice pack or an unopened bag of frozen peas or corn applied to the area will keep swelling to a minimum. Take pain medications as prescribed. The swelling usually subsides after 48 hours.
Use pain medication as directed. Call our office if the medication doesn’t seem to be working. If antibiotics are prescribed, continue to take them for the indicated length of time even if signs and symptoms of infection are gone. Drink lots of fluids and eat nutritious, soft food on the day of the extraction. You can eat normally as soon as you are comfortable.
It is important to resume your normal dental routine after 24 hours. This should include brushing and flossing your teeth at least once a day. This will speed healing and help keep your mouth fresh and clean.
After a few days, you should feel fine and can resume your normal activities. If you have heavy bleeding, severe pain, continued swelling for 2-3 days, or a reaction to the medication, call our office immediately.