You may have heard the word "extraction" when it comes to dental care and wondered what it means. You might even have been told that you need to have a tooth extracted. It is not difficult to understand. Extracting a tooth is the fancy term for removing a tooth. Here at Nevada Facial and Oral Surgery, we like to save a tooth when possible, but there are many cases where a tooth will need to be extracted.
Tooth Extractions: The Basics
It is common to extract a tooth. If you need to have a tooth removed, here is what you will want to know, and also what we might suggest replacing the tooth.
There are many reasons why we might suggest that a tooth is extracted. Very often it is because the tooth is damaged beyond repair due to tooth decay, plaque, and gum disease. Sometimes a tooth is loose, and there is no way that we can fix it. A tooth might also be extracted because it is crowding the other teeth in your mouth, or because it is deformed. Very often wisdom teeth are extracted because there is not enough room in the jawline for them.
A simple extraction is preferred if possible. With a simple extraction, we will remove the tooth and the root system altogether and whole. Often, we will perform a complicated or surgical extraction instead. If the tooth cannot be removed easily without risking damage to your jaw and your other teeth, we will go with a complicated extraction. We will section the tooth by cutting it into pieces. We will then remove the pieces, one at a time until the entire tooth has been removed.
When healing from a tooth extraction, you should use an ice pack to keep the swelling down. We might prescribe a pain reliever, or we might recommend a product that is over the counter. You will want to stick to soft foods while you heal. Dry socket is a fairly common problem after an extraction. A blood clot will form over the tooth socket almost immediately after the tooth has been extracted. If that clot comes loose, your nerve will be exposed. If you experience pain in the nerve area, let us know immediately.
There are ways to replace a tooth that has been extracted. Sometimes, we will recommend that the tooth is replaced with a dental implant. We might suggest partial dentures. A dental bridge could be a possibility. In the case of extracting wisdom teeth, we will not replace them. We will talk to you about replacing the tooth, if necessary before we extract the tooth.
Tooth extraction is nothing to be afraid of. We will use general anesthesia unless we opt for something different such as sedation. Here at Nevada Facial and Oral Surgery we will answer all of your questions before we extract the tooth. If you have not seen a dentist in a while, call (702) 329-7554. Regular dental checkups are an important part of keeping your mouth, your heart, and your mind healthy.