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Everything That You Need to Know About Tooth Extraction Procedures

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Everything That You Need to Know About Tooth Extraction Procedures

Dr. Hosseini

An oral health specialist tries to save a tooth, but sometimes an extraction is necessary. Tooth extraction happens for many reasons, for instance, dental trauma, overcrowding, or irreparable tooth disease. Besides relieving dental pain, a dental extraction helps eliminate bacteria from the mouth and improves oral health. Tooth extraction procedures are of two main types; simple and surgical. The simple method extracts the teeth from above the gum line. 

Whichsoever tooth extraction you have to undergo, there is a typical process involved. In comparison, the surgical procedure extracts the teeth partially or fully impacted beneath the gums. Read on further to learn everything you want to know about a tooth extraction procedure. 

Wisdom tooth extraction is a common procedure in the United States, where about 10 million third molars are removed yearly”. 

What is a Tooth Extraction Procedure?  

A tooth extraction is a dental procedure aiming to remove a tooth entirely. During an extraction procedure, the tooth is removed from the gum socket, and the entire process usually takes about 20-40 minutes, on average. A tooth extraction procedure is commonly associated with “pulling a tooth”; it reduces the prevalence of harmful bacteria in the mouth. 

Surgical tooth extractions are pretty common in the United States and are a straightforward process. If your dentist has recommended tooth extraction, it may seem daunting. Besides having dental anxiety, you might be a little anxious about the procedure. 

A surgical tooth extraction usually requires minor surgery, but it isn’t horrifying, as you imagine. Almost every dentist recommends some form of pain relief to relax you during the procedure. However, simple tooth extraction is a relatively quick and easy outpatient procedure. Because of advanced dental sedation options today, a surgical procedure can also be done with ease. 

When Removing a Tooth Is Necessary? 

Removing a tooth is necessary if your tooth has been badly damaged to the point beyond repair. Your dentist might also recommend a tooth extraction during the following conditions. 

  • You have severe tooth decay, and a root canal procedure isn’t a valid option. 
  • You have a fractured tooth due to dental trauma, age, tooth grinding, or otherwise. 
  • You have extreme pain, tooth sensitivity, and swelling beyond your control. 
  • You have an impacted tooth that requires a surgical tooth extraction. 
  • You have crowded teeth, and a tooth extraction is required to help eliminate overcrowding. 
  • You have severe gum disease that results in the loosening of a tooth. 
  • You have faced dental injury or trauma where removing a tooth is viable.

Types of Tooth Extraction Procedures 

A general dentist usually performs a simple tooth extraction procedure. On the other hand, surgical tooth extractions are mostly referred to oral surgeons or periodontists for best results. Here we will discuss the two types of tooth extractionon procedures for your enlightenment. So, let’s begin.   

  • Simple Extraction 

A simple extraction procedure extracts the teeth visible in the mouth; they aren’t hiding beneath the gums. The dentist employs a tool known as an “elevator” to pull the tooth from its socket. First, the surrounding area is numbed, and the tooth is loosened afterward. The dentist then uses forceps to remove the tooth immediately; however, it may take time, as per the tooth’s condition. Simple tooth extraction is a relatively quick procedure and can be used to remove multiple teeth all at once if required.

Simple tooth extraction has many oral health benefits in cases deemed appropriate. After a tooth is removed, the source of infection also goes away with it. Besides relieving dental pain, the tooth extraction procedure also eliminates swelling and discomfort. If the patient has overcrowded teeth, the removal will allow better alignment with orthodontic devices. 

  • Surgical Extraction 

Another tooth extraction procedure is known as “surgical extraction.” It is a procedure that removes teeth that are not visible in the mouth and lie beneath the gums. It is mainly employed to remove wisdom teeth; however, the dentist can also use it otherwise. Sometimes the teeth are broken, and only the roots are intact; surgical tooth removal is the best choice here. 

First, a small incision is made in the gums during a surgical extraction. It helps access the tooth that needs to be removed. Sedative options are also used in the surgical process to make it better for both the patient and the doctor. Usually, local anesthesia is employed in the process; however, general anesthesia can also be used. That mainly depends on your overall health condition and the tooth’s condition. After removing your tooth, your dental health professional will recommend a few post-care guidelines. We will discuss these later on. 

Sedation Options During Tooth Extractions 

Sedation options in dentistry are excellent to consider when patients have moderate to extreme dental anxiety. They also make the procedure comfortable for the patient and the doctor. Sedation options are also used in tooth extraction procedures to achieve better results. The list of sedation medications in dentistry includes the following:             

  • Nitrous Oxide: Nitrous oxide as a soothing method is commonly known as a “Laughing gas.” It is a gas that patients inhale while wearing a mask or a nosepiece. It relaxes the patient and elevates the mood during the procedure.  
  • Oral Sedation: Oral sedation is mainly given as a pill an hour before your tooth extraction appointment. The dosage is adjusted as per your need, and it erases dental anxiety and the feeling of pain.  
  • Intravenous Sedation (IV): If the patient has too much dental anxiety, the sedation medication is injected directly into the bloodstream. It is the highest form of sedation, where you’ll require a driver to take you home after the procedure.  
  • General Anesthesia: Sometimes, your dentist recommends general anesthesia for an intensive procedure, such as an impacted wisdom tooth. It will keep you unconscious throughout the process, and you’ll feel no pain or discomfort.   

Tooth Extraction Procedure Explained 

Typically, a tooth extraction procedure involves the following steps, regardless of whether it’s a simple or a surgical extraction.

Step 1: Tooth Numbing 

The tooth extraction procedure starts with numbing the tooth, bone tissue, and gums. Sometimes, the dentist recommends general anesthesia for the patient. In other cases, sedation methods such as intravenous or oral sedation are given. Whichever is referred to you will make you comfortable throughout the tooth extraction procedure. 

Step 2: Tooth Extraction 

The next step is extracting the tooth from its socket. Sometimes, the tooth is visible in the mouth, and the dentist uses an elevator to pull the tooth. In other cases, a surgical extraction must be done because the tooth lies beneath the gum line.

Step 3: Closing the Empty Space 

After a tooth has been extracted, the vacated space has to be closed. First, the socket is cleaned to ensure no infection or pathogen lies there. For this, your dentist will scrape the walls of the socket. Afterward, he would compress the socket to return it to its original size. Then, the socket is washed out to remove any tooth fragments. A gauze is also used to stop bleeding in the socket, and finally, the vacated space is closed. The dentist uses stitches in surgical tooth extractions to close the vacated space. It is also a better option in case of removing multiple teeth in a row. 

Step 4: Bleeding Control 

The dentist will place a folded gauze on the extraction site to control bleeding. Then he would ask you to bite down to exert pressure; this will help control bleeding. You may be asked to retain firm pressure for about an hour.

Guidelines on Post-Extraction Care 

After your tooth is gone, you will require a few days to heal. During this time, it is imperative to follow specific guidelines to minimize discomfort and the risk of infection.

  • Keep the extraction site clean and gently rinse your mouth after 12 hours. 
  • Brush your teeth gently and avoid brushing around the extraction area. 
  • Drink plenty of fluids and eat soft and healthy foods, such as yogurt, ice cream, cake, pudding, lukewarm soup, etc.                     
  • It is not good to choose hot liquids for a few days. It will increase swelling in the mouth.
  • Do not drink with a straw; it may dislodge the blood clot.
  • Do not smoke as it will break down the blood clot.

Concluding Thoughts

It’s never fun hearing that you are undergoing a tooth extraction procedure. However, sometimes it’s necessary, and you must go through it to eliminate the risk of infection. If your dentist recommends a tooth extraction procedure, also discuss viable tooth replacement options to restore your oral health.

Contact your Pinole dentists, Dr. Azadeh Hosseini and Dr. Ghazal Hosseini, at Top Pinole Dental to learn about Tooth Extraction Procedures.


Extracting Wisdom Teeth

*This media/content or any other on this website does not prescribe, recommend, or prevent any treatment or procedure. Therefore, we highly recommend that you get the advice of a qualified dentist or other medical practitioners regarding your specific dental condition*