Although dentists will use every measure to prevent tooth loss, there are still some occasions when a tooth may need to be extracted. In this article, we’re discussing what a tooth extraction is and what symptoms might mean you need a tooth pulled.
What is a Tooth Extraction?
If you hear that you need a tooth extraction, meaning you need a tooth pulled, it can be intimidating. However, having a tooth pulled is a common dental procedure. A tooth extraction, Colgate explains, is the removal of a tooth from its socket in the bone.
Signs You Need a Tooth Pulled
We will take every measure possible to try to save your tooth. We will try to repair teeth with fillings, crowns, and other treatments. However, sometimes the damage is too severe and results in extraction. Some of the common reasons that a tooth needs to be extracted include:
- Decay or infection that has compromised the integrity of the tooth.
- Trauma or injury.
- There isn’t enough room for all the teeth in your mouth.
- Baby teeth that don’t fall out in time for permanent teeth to come in.
- Orthodontic treatment may require tooth extraction to create room for teeth as they move into place.
- Wisdom teeth are often extracted either before or after they erupt.
Tooth Extraction Procedure
Once it’s determined that the best way to heal your smile is by having a tooth extracted, it’s time to understand the procedure. There are two different kinds of tooth extraction, depending on where your tooth is located and if it’s fully erupted or not:
This is the most common type of extraction for decayed or damaged teeth. A simple extraction involves you receiving local anesthetic to numb the area around your tooth so you don’t feel pain during the procedure. Once your numb, the dentist will use an instrument known as an elevator to loosen the tooth and then forceps to remove it.
Commonly used for wisdom teeth removal, a surgical extraction will typically involve both local and intravenous anesthesia. Further, you may also receive general anesthesia, depending on your medical history. With general anesthesia, you will be unconscious for the procedure. Once you’re ready, the dentist will make an incision in the gums, removing bone around the tooth if needed so they can get all of the tooth out. In some cases, your tooth may need to be cut a bit before it can all be removed.
Preventing Tooth Extraction
Our teeth are meant to last a lifetime. There are steps you can take to do all you can to prevent the need to have a tooth pulled. To protect your teeth, follow these tips:
- Be sure to care for your teeth and gums at home. You can’t get a deep cleaning from the dentist everyday, so caring for your teeth at home plays an integral part in keeping all of your teeth and your gums healthy. You should brush your teeth twice a day, for two minutes in the morning and again before bed. Additionally, you should floss once each day to remove food and plaque buildup from between the teeth.
- Have any dental health issues looked at. You may think a small toothache or occasionally bleeding gums aren’t a big deal, however, it could be more serious than you think. If you notice any changes with your oral health, we recommend making an appointment to get it looked at. While it may not be anything serious, having it examined early could help prevent further issues from occurring. This can protect your dental health, and save you time, money, and intensive treatments later on in life.
- Guard your teeth. A mouth guard and a night guard are two devices that can do a lot to protect your smile. If you grind your teeth at night, talk with us about receiving a custom-fit, sturdy night guard to protect your smile. Further, if you are active and play sports, you should be wearing a mouth guard to protect your teeth from an injury. Without protection, your teeth could suffer great damage from constant teeth grinding/clenching or by an accidental hit to the mouth during a contact sport.
Make an Appointment with Niles Family Dentistry
Dr. Ashley Niles and our team at Niles Family Dentistry want to do all we can to keep your teeth healthy and prevent tooth extraction. If you’re past due for an appointment or have any signs of trouble occurring in your mouth, don’t hesitate to call us today: (720)-744-0001.