What You Need to Know about Tooth Extractions and Aftercare

posted by Muse Dental Group   November 10, 2020

Tooth extraction is a dental procedure in which a tooth is removed from the mouth and is required for various reasons. Your dentist will do everything they can to save your tooth, however, sometimes extraction becomes the only option.

Here are some topics we will dive into:

Reasons for Tooth Extraction

There are many reasons a tooth needs to be extracted, from prolonged pain to cosmetic purposes. Today, we are just going to discuss a few of the most common reasons a tooth needs to be removed.

First, a tooth may need to be extracted due to severe cases of tooth decay that has not been treated for a long period. Once the decay has worn through the enamel of the tooth and the dentin begins to also deteriorate, it is time for that tooth to be removed. At this stage, if the tooth is not treated, the patient may suffer from a canal infection.

Second, a tooth may be removed if a patient is suffering from gum disease. The gum and the surrounding structures begin to deteriorate and can no longer hold the tooth in place. Therefore, the tooth may fall out on its own, or require extraction.

Third, a tooth may be extracted if the patient’s teeth are overcrowded, and room for other teeth needs to be made. This is usually done in orthodontics cases so that the remaining teeth can be aligned properly, especially if the patient still has baby teeth that need to be removed before the teeth can be aligned.

Fourth, extraction may be necessary for impacted teeth, or teeth that have yet to erupt from the gum. The best example of impacted teeth is wisdom teeth, which often need to be removed surgically to prevent overcrowding or pain.

Finally, a tooth may be extracted if a tooth breaks near the gums, leaving little capacity for the restoration of the tooth. Instead, the tooth would need to be extracted and replaced by an implant.

The Tooth Extraction Process

Getting your tooth extracted sounds like it would be extremely painful because your tooth is being fully removed from the root.

However, your dentist will numb the area from which the tooth is being extracted. First, a topic gel is rubbed along the gum and cheek to numb the area before a local anesthetic is injected. This is essentially numbing for the numbing.

Next, your dentist will inject a local anesthetic, or numbing shot, to fully numb the areas in preparation for tooth extraction.

Your dentist will then use a dental elevator that goes between the tooth and the bone so that the dentist can remove the tooth from the ligament.

Then your dentist will use forceps, which allow the dentist to rotate the tooth and remove it fully.

However, this process differs slightly if the patient requires surgical removal, as in the case of wisdom teeth.

In this case, an oral surgeon has to make a small incision in the gum to remove the impacted tooth below the surface.

In both cases, you feel pressure from the removal but should not feel any pain since your dentist will ensure that the area is fully numb.

Tooth Extraction Recovery

Our mouths have a miraculous ability to heal quickly. However, depending on the severity of the extraction, the healing process differs slightly. For example, a surgical extraction may require a longer recovery time than quick tooth removal.

In general, the healing process for a tooth extraction should take anywhere from 7 to 10 days.

Tooth Extraction Recovery: Dos

The first tip for a smooth recovery after a tooth extraction is to take the prescribed painkillers. Especially if you had to undergo a surgical extraction, such as wisdom teeth removal, the recovery process may be painful without the necessary painkillers.

Second, leave the gauze placed by your dentist in your mouth for three to four hours after the procedure. It is meant to soak up the blood and allow the area to heal properly.

Additionally, ice the area to reduce swelling, inflammation, and pain. Just be sure to not leave the ice on for more than 10 minutes.

Finally, to ensure the area stays clean and to prevent any infections, rinse your mouth with saltwater 24 hours after the procedure. This will kill any unnecessary bacteria that may be lingering in your mouth.

Tooth Extraction Recovery: Don’ts

First, do not do any vigorous activities for a few days after the extraction. This is mainly for surgical cases, as non-surgical extractions heal quickly and do not tend to have a painful healing process.

Additionally, do not rinse your mouth any sooner than 24 hours after the procedure as this could cause the blood clots to loosen and therefore cause excessive bleeding. Again, this is mainly for surgical cases, however, even with non-surgical extractions, it is important to allow the area to fully heal before vigorously rinsing.

Similarly, do not brush or floss the area where the tooth has been extracted to prevent any irritation, infection, or bleeding.

Finally, avoid smoking after the procedure as it can dry out the gums and keep the extraction site from healing properly.

Conclusion

If you need a tooth extracted or are feeling pain and are unsure if the tooth needs to be removed, visit your dentist as soon as possible. With treatment from the dentists at Muse Dental, you can experience a pain-free extraction process!

Here at Muse Dental, we want to help you maintain your oral health and provide you with the best care possible. If you need an extraction or are feeling some pain that needs to be treated, schedule your appointment with us today!

We’d love to have you for a checkup at Muse Dental Group with Dr. G. Bardakjian. He will evaluate your oral health and will ensure your extraction is done with the utmost care.

Your smile is in great hands at Muse Dental Group!

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