The reasons for getting your teeth extracted can vary, but the main reasons include tooth decays, periodontal gum disease, and tooth impaction. Removing a tooth is always a last resort for dentists. Their job is to do everything they can to save your original tooth, but extraction can also be the best thing for your overall health. Leaving infected or decayed teeth in your mouth can lead to a variety of health concerns.
Some extractions can be avoided by getting your regularly scheduled cleanings, dental exams, and even dental sealants.
What should you expect?
A dentist will start your extraction appointment using local anesthetic to numb the area of the tooth. For a simple extraction the dentist uses forceps and it is typically a short appointment. If the tooth is impacted the dentist will then switch to a surgical extraction. This process involves opening up the gums to gain access to the tooth.
After the extraction
Getting lots of rest is the best thing you can do! You will receive information from the dentist and assistants on the best ways to promote healing. The most common postoperative complication is called a dry socket. This can be avoided by not smoking, spitting, and sucking through straws. Other less known issues that patients should plan for are super eruption, recession on the teeth next to them, and bone loss.
This occurs when you extract a tooth and the tooth on the opposite side of the mouth has nothing to bite against. The tooth will drift into the empty area and cause problems such as damage to your gums and the teeth may become crooked. The tooth will also become more exposed and this can lead to a higher incidence of cavities and infections. If you’re getting a tooth extracted you may want to consider getting it replaced to avoid this issue.
Bone Loss and Recession
The bone in your jaw is preserved through the stimulus of chewing and the support of the tooth. After a tooth has been removed the bone resorbs. Your gums need the same support that teeth offer and will resorb along with the bone. This can become a problem in the future if you’re ever interested in replacing the tooth. Placing an implant requires a certain amount of bone and resorption can make it not possible to place a new tooth without getting a bone graft done first. Our best advice is to have an idea about what you want to do to replace the tooth before the extraction to save on future procedures!