37The goal of modern dentistry is to prevent tooth loss. When a tooth can’t be saved, extraction (Removal) of the tooth may be the only treatment of choice for that tooth. A panoramic x-ray is an excellent diagnostic tool to give us a complete picture of the alignment of your jaw, the positioning of your teeth and wisdom teeth to determine whether there is sufficient space for it to erupt or no. In addition, it is an excellent diagnostic tool for evaluating the supporting bone for possible infections or tumors. Most minor surgeries are performed at our office. For complicated multiple extractions where patient require removal in the same visit, our dentists will refer you to a maxillofacial surgeon.

Teeth are extracted for a variety of reasons:

  • Decay has reached deep into the tooth
  • Infection has destroyed a large portion of the tooth or surrounding bone
  • There is not enough room for all the teeth in your mouth

Many dentists recommend extracting impacted teeth that are only partially erupted. Bacteria can enter around a partially erupted tooth and cause an infection, which can extend into the surrounding bone and become extremely serious. Impacted teeth continue trying to break through the gum tissue even if there is not enough room to accommodate them. The continued pressure caused by this attempted eruption can eventually damage the roots of nearby teeth. Removing a tooth that is impacted can often prevent infection, damage to adjacent teeth and bone, and save pain in the years to come.

Before a tooth is removed, your dentist will thoroughly review your medical and dental history and take the appropriate X-rays.

X-rays reveal the length, shape, and position of the tooth and surrounding bone. From this information, your dentist can estimate the degree of difficulty of the procedure and decide whether to refer you to a specialist called maxillofacial surgeon.

When deciding to remove the tooth, the area around your tooth will be anesthetized. Dentists use a local anaesthetic to numb the area of the mouth where the extraction will take place.
For a simple extraction, once the area is anesthetized, the tooth is loosened with the help of a special tool called an elevator, then extracted with dental forceps. Your dentist may also want to smoothen and recontour the underlying bone. When he or she is finished, they may choose to close the area with a stitch.

3838It is critical to keep the area clean and prevent infection immediately following the removal of a tooth. Postoperative instructions will be given to ensure your comfort and prevent any possible complication.
A certain amount of pain and discomfort is to be expected
following a wisdom tooth extraction. Your dentist will prescribe the appropriate medication for you to prevent this. It may help to apply an ice pack to the face for 15 minutes at a time. You have also to limit strenuous activity and avoid hot liquids for the first 24 hours. The day after the extraction, your dentist may suggest that you begin gently rinsing your mouth with warm salt water (do not swallow the water). Under normal circumstances, discomfort should lessen within three days to two weeks.

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