Tooth Extraction: Why It May Be Necessary and How Dentists Keep It Safe

Posted October 31, 2022 by in Health + Fitness
dentist looking at x-rays

Tooth extraction is the process of removing teeth from your mouth. It can be a scary prospect, especially if you grew up in the belief that dental procedures are painful. In order to perform the procedure as safely and comfortably as possible, dentists take several precautions to ensure that the tooth removal process goes as smoothly as possible. This guide will walk you through how and why tooth extraction may be necessary as well as how dentists ensure it’s done safely and properly with proper pain management. 

What Is The Procedure For Extracting A Tooth?

First of all, it is important to understand that dentists do not take this decision lightly. Before they decide to remove a tooth, dentists ensure they fully understand the situation. This includes two things: An x-ray of your teeth to observe placement and composition, and an understanding of your other medical concerns. For example, if a person has severe anxiety, the dentist may consider different anesthetic approaches. 

One of the first steps in tooth extraction is numbing the area. Once the dentist has determined which tooth needs to be extracted, they will numb the gum or mouth with a local anesthetic. Yet, if you are nervous, they may also consider full anesthesia in some cases. The process typically takes less than five minutes, but it can take longer if there are impacted teeth or wisdom teeth that need to be removed. The dentist may need to make an incision on your gums. The incision will be closed after the procedure. Once the tooth has been removed, some bleeding may occur because of pressure applied to the gums. 

Tooth impaction

Dentists may recommend tooth extraction if a tooth becomes impacted, meaning it’s not fully in its socket. As a result, the tooth can’t come out properly. An impacted tooth can be painful to chew on or even touch, but it can also become infected if left untreated. 

Dentists may use a variety of methods to remove the tooth, depending on factors like the age of the patient and how long the tooth has been impacted.

Periodontal disease

Dentists have a number of ways they can treat periodontal disease before tooth extraction becomes necessary. After the infection of the gum becomes too severe, they will recommend extraction of the most damaged teeth to restore the health of your gums. Gum disease is the result of a build-up of plaque and tartar on the teeth, leading to inflammation. When the inflammation affects the integrity of the gum or the bone, extracting the affected tooth is the best solution to save the remaining teeth.

Trauma through an accident

In the event of an accident, teeth can be the first casualties. Teeth that have been knocked out or pulled out can cause damage to your mouth and jaw if not removed quickly. It isn’t uncommon for individuals who have been involved in car accidents to have more than one tooth removed when they are too damaged to save. When this is the case, you can consider setting a bridge using all-on-4 dental implants for a rapid process. The implants can be set in a few hours, ensuring you can regain your smile as quickly as possible. 

Excessive decay

When decay is too advanced, a tooth extraction may be necessary to alleviate pain. When this is the case, dentists often take care of the process in one appointment. With today’s modern techniques, patients are less likely to experience significant pain or fear during the extraction. The dentist will talk to you to prepare for the procedure. In most cases, they will numb the area with local anesthesia before doing anything else. But if you have severe anxiety, they may discuss other options with you to help alleviate stress. Next, they will remove any decay from the tooth before extracting it from its socket with gentle traction.

Overcrowding

Overcrowding is a frequent occurrence for people who have their wisdom teeth out or have severely misaligned teeth. An orthodontist will first check your jaws and teeth to define whether there is enough room for your teeth. If there is sufficient space for all teeth, your dentist may recommend different alignment treatments, such as braces or aligners. 

However, if your jaws don’t have sufficient space for all teeth, tooth extraction can help space out and straighten your teeth. 

In the case of wisdom teeth, dentists will often remove all wisdom teeth to prevent or cure overcrowding. If the wisdom teeth have already pushed your existing teeth to make room for themselves, you may want to consider alignment procedures too. 

In conclusion, dental extraction is far from being a painful process. On the contrary, it can alleviate existing pain and help protect your remaining teeth.