A dental extraction (“pulling a tooth”) is the removal of a tooth from the mouth. If at all possible, the extraction of a tooth is avoided because a missing tooth might eventually result in improper alignment of the teeth and may create problems with the functions of the mouth and jaw, including problems with chewing and speaking. Although a tooth extraction is a procedure of last resort, sometimes it can not be avoided. Patients who need to have a teeth extraction procedure, including wisdom teeth, trust their dental care to Dr. Drew. Common reasons for tooth extractions include:
Severe Tooth Decay or Infection: The most common reason for tooth extractions is severe damage to a tooth caused by tooth decay or infection. Often decay or infection destroys so much of the tooth that the tooth cannot be saved.
Tooth Damage Due to Breakage or Fracture: When a tooth is broken or fractured as the result of an accident, there is sometimes too little tooth remaining to save and a tooth extraction is the only treatment option.
Severe Gum Disease: Although much less common a cause of tooth extraction that decay or breakage, some patients suffer severe gum disease that so weakens the bone and tissues that support a tooth that a tooth extraction is the only treatment option.
Orthodontic Treatment: Some patients who are wearing braces need to have a tooth extraction so that their remaining teeth will move into the proper alignment.
Tooth extractions are classified as “simple extractions” or “surgical extractions.”
Simple Extraction: A simple extraction refers to the removal of a tooth that is visible in the mouth and easily accessible with dental instruments.
Surgical Extraction: Surgical teeth extraction refers to the removal of a tooth that is not easily accessible because it has broken off under the gum line or it has not fully erupted. A surgical extractions generally requires an incision in the soft tissues covering the tooth and may also require removal of some of the bone around the tooth. Often, the tooth must be split into two or more pieces in order to be removed.
In most cases, healing after a tooth extraction is very fast. After five to seven days the mouth has usually healed enough to allow eating a normal diet without pain or sensitivity. In three to four weeks, the gums should be fully healed. If the tooth extraction required the removal of bone, the full healing of the bone may take up to six months. Dr. Drew and his staff will instruct you regarding post-operative care. If you have any questions regarding tooth extraction please feel free to give us a call at 845-434-8443.