Tooth Extractions at Falls Town Dental
Tooth extractions, or the removal of one or more teeth, are usually used as a last resort in dentistry, as keeping the natural tooth in the mouth is ideal. There are many reasons why single or multiple extractions may be performed, including pervasive tooth decay, the impaction of wisdom teeth, or the need to create space for orthodontic devices.
The most significant short-term benefit associated with tooth extraction is the elimination of pain. If a tooth is severely decayed or an infection is present, removing the affected tooth almost immediately alleviates discomfort. However, it should be noted that further procedures are necessary to replace the extracted tooth. Leaving a gap is not a viable option as the other teeth tend to twist out of alignment to fill the space.
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Why Would I Need an Extraction?
Tooth extractions are incredibly common procedures. It should be reiterated that an extraction is used as a procedure of last resort, when nothing more can be done to save the tooth.
Here is a brief overview of some of the main reasons for tooth extraction:
Deep decay – This is easily the most common reason for tooth extraction, accounting for around two-thirds of all extraction procedures performed. When decay affects the surface of the tooth as well as the pulp, root canal procedures cannot be performed. Root canal therapy is only viable where the general structure of the tooth is in stable condition.
Extra teeth –There are a variety of explanations associated with extra teeth, but most commonly they are baby teeth that do not shed. Extra teeth take up space on the arch, causing nearby teeth to twist out of place. A tooth extraction is necessary in this case to provide enough space for the teeth to properly realign.
Periodontal disease – Often teeth have to be extracted because the gums and underlying bone are so severely eroded that they can no longer hold the tooth in place securely. The cause of bone and gum recession is almost always advanced periodontal disease (gum disease). Poor bone density means that the chance of restoring the natural tooth is minimal.
Prior to braces – Traditional orthodontic braces require enough space to for the teeth to move into ideal alignment. If space cannot be created naturally, a tooth may be extracted as an alternative.
Fractured teeth – Fortunately, dentists are able to save injured teeth in most circumstances with the aid of root canal therapy. However, there are some instances where the tooth has become fractured in a way that makes repair impossible. Your oral health professional will remove the tooth and use a prosthetic replacement in most cases.
How is an Extraction Performed?
Generally, tooth extraction can be simple in nature or involve more complex surgical processes. Simple extractions are performed on fully emerged teeth after applying local anesthetic to the treatment site. Instruments are used to elevate the tooth and then sever the periodontal ligament. The tooth is then carefully removed with dental forceps.
Surgical extractions are performed on teeth that are either invisible or inaccessible, like un-erupted wisdom teeth. An incision is usually made in the gum tissue and a drill is used to precisely remove some of the adjacent bone tissue. Sometimes, the tooth has to be split into several pieces to completely remove it.
Wisdom Teeth FAQ
What are wisdom teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the last set of permanent teeth to erupt and also called third molars. In most cases, you don’t need your wisdom teeth, and leaving them in can cause other oral health problems. They usually start to surface between the ages of 17 to 21 years old, when a person is old enough to have gained some “wisdom,” hence the name.
Can wisdom teeth cause problems?
If you have a small jaw, then there may not be room for wisdom teeth to come in properly. They can shift position and crowd the roots of neighboring teeth, forcing them out of alignment. Wisdom teeth can also cause jaw discomfort and swelling, leading to a higher risk of developing gum disease. Even if they surface without issues, they can take up space, making it more difficult to clean between these teeth and increasing the risk of decay and gum disease.
How to tell if wisdom teeth are coming in?
Pain, swelling, and inflammation are the most common signs that your wisdom teeth are erupting. However, sometimes, you may not have these symptoms, and the erupting teeth can still cause problems. The best way to determine if your wisdom teeth are endangering your oral health is to visit our office regularly so we can do a thorough examination. If your wisdom teeth are coming in straight and not creating any issues, they will not need to be removed.
Should I get my wisdom teeth removed?
At Falls Town Dental, we prefer to examine and diagnose wisdom teeth removal by the age of 19. At this stage, your tooth roots and bones are still forming, so if you do need your wisdom teeth removed your recovery time will be faster. When you visit our office for your regular exams and cleanings, we can keep an eye on these teeth and provide treatment if needed. If you have pain, swelling, difficulty opening your mouth, or other symptoms between dental visits, you should contact us right away. We can determine if your wisdom teeth are the source of your problem and recommend the best solution to maintain your optimal oral health.
If you have any questions or concerns about tooth extraction, please contact your oral health care provider.
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