Tooth Extraction: Why You Need It and What to Expect

Tooth Extraction

Losing your teeth as a child (milk teeth) is a normal part of development. Eventually, you will grow your permanent teeth to replace the ones that you lost. However, you may need to lose a tooth or two as an adult.

Sometimes, tooth extraction is a necessary procedure for adults. It is the removal of one or more teeth from the mouth. This is an essential procedure due to various reasons. Losing a tooth is nothing to be ashamed of, as it could save your whole jaw in the long run.

Many people receive recommendations from dental professionals to have a tooth removed. However, the misinformation or lack of reliable info could cause anxiety and worry over the procedure.

Luckily, we offer helpful information to put your mind at ease about this procedure. Additionally, you get to learn why it is necessary to keep you open-minded. Therefore, keep scrolling to learn more about tooth extraction.

Why Do I Need Tooth Extraction?

Permanent teeth are supposed to last a lifetime. However, this could change due to several reasons. The most common reasons why a dental care professional will recommend a tooth extraction include:

  • Infection. Tooth decay can extend damage to the pulp. This is the center of the tooth structure in the gum that contains blood vessels and nerves. When the bacteria reach the pulp, it causes an infection. You can treat this condition with antibiotics or Root Canal Therapy. However, sometimes the damage is too extensive, and both these therapies do not work. To avoid the spread of infection, you will need a tooth extraction.
  • Overcrowding. Another reason why you may need tooth extraction is to achieve successful results in orthodontia. Orthodontia is an umbrella term that encompasses procedures used to align teeth and the jaw properly. This is only possible if you have enough space in your mouth. So the profession will recommend tooth extraction to achieve the perfect smile.
  • Injury/ Damage. Other times, you could sustain damage to a tooth. The dentist will do everything possible to restore the tooth to normal function and visuals. However, sometimes the damage is too extensive, and tooth extraction is the most practical solution. Additionally, if there is trauma to the surrounding bone, you may need a tooth extraction to prevent further damage and pain.
  • Tooth Impaction. This refers to a condition where a tooth fails to grow fully and thus does not erupt from the gum. This is common with wisdom teeth due to overcrowding in the mouth. The lower jaw wisdom teeth erupt last and are prone to this situation. When this happens, most dental healthcare practitioners recommend tooth extraction of the impacted teeth.
  • Periodontal (Gum) Disease. This is a common infection of the bones and tissues that surround the teeth. This infection causes the tissues to separate, as well as the bones. This brings the tooth loose and puts it at risk of sustaining damage. Dentists often recommend tooth extractions for such situations.

What to Expect During the Procedure

Some dentists and dental surgeons perform tooth extractions. When you are ready, the surgeon will inject a local anesthetic to numb the area. In exceptional cases, the surgeon may administer a general anesthetic to prevent any pain in your body. You will also sleep through the whole procedure.

If tooth extraction is needed because of impacted teeth, the surgeon will start by cutting away the gum and tissue that cover the tooth. The surgeon will then grasp the tooth using forceps and gently rock it back and forth to loosen it from the ligaments and jawbones that hold it in place. After it is loose enough, the surgeon will pull it out.

Sometimes, the surgeon will remove the tooth in pieces. After it is out, a blood clot will form in the empty socket. The surgeon will roll up some gauze into the area and have you bite down to stop the bleeding.

Additionally, the dentist may stitch the socket to close the gum edges over the empty socket. These stitches self-dissolve over time. This exact procedure is used for tooth extraction of infected and damaged teeth.

What to Note before Surgery

There are a few things you need to note before the surgery, especially during consultation. For some people, you will have to stop taking some types of medication before the surgery. One such mediation is blood thinners.

Some people take blood thinners to prevent clots from forming in their blood vessels. Unfortunately, this form of medication will lead to excessive bleeding during tooth extraction. This is because the blood clot will not develop as quickly.

The surgeon can control bleeding by using a topical medication on the extracted area and packing the socket with dissolvable gauze or foam. In some cases, the surgeon will recommend seizing intake of blood thinners which you can pass through your doctor.

You could also switch to a different type, but the surgeon will consult a blood test to ensure you are eligible for the surgery. Additionally, you need to let your doctor know if you have some conditions that could put you at risk during the surgery or affect your recovery progress. These include:

  • Impaired or compromised immune system
  • Liver disease (cirrhosis)
  • Congenital heart defect
  • Damaged or artificial heart valves
  • History of bacterial endocarditis
  • An artificial joint, such as a hip replacement

In some cases, the surgeon may prescribe some antibiotics before the surgery. However, this is in rare conditions, and the dentist will do so to treat infections with significant symptoms. This includes fever, oral swelling, and general discomfort.

Additionally, you may need antibiotics before the surgery if you are at a high risk of infective endocarditis. This is an infection of the heart valves and interior lining of the heart’s chambers. People with heart conditions are at a higher risk of developing this condition after dental surgery.

In conclusion, as long as you are in professional hands, you do not have to worry about tooth extraction. It is a procedure that most people undergo, and after you heal, you will have an easier time chewing and smiling.

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