A dental extraction is the removal of a tooth from the dental alveolus, which is the tooth’s socket. It is a procedure where a tooth or teeth are removed, which may be needed for a variety of reasons. A dental extraction is indicated due to irreversible tooth decay, overcrowding, and tooth infection. In the case of overcrowding, bicuspids are removed to create space for other teeth. For example, patients who wear orthodontic braces might require a dental extraction to create enough space for their teeth. A dental extraction is also used to remove a tooth with a toothache that fails to resolve with conservative treatments. Patients undergoing chemotherapy or an organ transplant might need a dental extraction of a bad tooth or teeth to preserve their oral health. The extraction of visible teeth is usually short and simple. However, surgery may be indicated in the case of impacted tooth or teeth broken along the gumline. Both outpatient and surgical dental extractions are done at Peninsula Family Dental Center.
Preparation for a Tooth Extraction
Brush and floss your teeth before going to see your dental professional. Do not smoke before your appointment. Avoid eating before having an extraction surgery. Tell our dental professional if you have a cold since you will need to reschedule if you are sick. Inform our dental professional if you will be receiving medications that contain a bisphosphonate. If you are planning on taking a medication with a bisphosphonate, your dental extraction will have to come before starting the medication. Otherwise, you have an increased risk of osteonecrosis of the bone where the tooth or teeth are extracted. Inform our dental professional of a positive history or presence of infective endocarditis, thyroid disease, a congenital heart defect, diabetes, hypertension, renal disease, liver disease, adrenal disease, artificial joint, or compromised immunity. Our dental professional might also prescribe antibiotics a few days before your appointment if you have an impaired immune system.
Before scheduling or commencing the procedure, our dental professional will take a radiograph to examine the tooth or teeth to be extracted. A dental extraction can either be simple or surgical. For a simple extraction, local anesthesia is applied to numb the area where the tooth or teeth are to be extracted. Our dental professional will use an instrument called an elevator to loosen the tooth before using forceps to remove it.
With a surgical extraction, you may receive one or more of the following: local anesthesia, intravenous anesthesia, and/or general anesthesia. The option selected may depend on your health conditions. Our dental professional will make a small incision on your gums with a scalpel. In addition, a section of your bone might need to be taken out before the tooth can be removed.
Brush your teeth twice daily and floss at least once a day as you should normally. However, avoid the extraction site. Apply an icepack on your cheek on the side from which the tooth was extracted to relieve swelling. Take all medications prescribed by our dental professional. Avoid rinsing the extraction site or using a straw for at least 24 hours. The day after the procedure, start eating soft foods first before gradually trying other foods over the next few days. After the first 24 hours, rinse your mouth with warm saltwater.
The extraction of a compromised tooth helps preserve the overall health of the mouth and consequently may prevent systemic infection. Come see us at Peninsula Family Dental Center to discuss and schedule your tooth extraction procedure. Call us at (907) 283-9125.