A severely damaged tooth sometimes needs to be extracted. A tooth extraction is the removal of the crown and root of a tooth. It’s important to remove infected teeth as soon as possible to ensure oral health. Oral health is important for maintaining general health.
A general dentist or a specialized oral surgeon would be able to judge whether or not an extraction is necessary. Removing a damaged tooth helps keep bacteria and infection from spreading into other areas in the mouth. The extraction process will be explained before anything is done.
The dentist or oral surgeon gives a local anesthetic to numb the area where the tooth will be removed. Depending on the area of extraction, a stronger anesthetic may be used. Sometimes, sedation is used, so a driver is necessary. When stitches are used, they help close and heal where the tooth was removed. Usually, there is a piece of cotton gauze to bite down on for pressure to help stop bleeding.
After surgery, some discomfort is to be expected. In most cases, the recovery period is short and only lasts a couple days. Pain killers can be prescribed and should be taken as only as prescribed. Rinsing with warm salt water frequently after 24 hours helps reduce swelling and hastens the healing process. Relaxing after surgery with little physical activity is important, as moving about can increase bleeding and swelling. Smoking and drinking alcohol should be avoided as they both can thin the blood and cause bleeding. Brush carefully and try not to touch the extraction area with the tooth brush, and keep the tongue away as well. A follow-up appointment will be made to ensure healing is progressing.
Brushing and flossing properly can help prevent any tooth extractions.