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What to Expect During a Tooth Extraction

Many cases of dental anxiety can be attributed to the fear of the unknown. Understanding a procedure can often help patients feel much more confident and at ease when receiving dental care in Detroit. If your dentist has suggested that you need an extraction, here are some of the most important facts you should know about these procedures for yourself and your family members.

Why You May Need an Extraction

Dental extractions are usually reserved for cases in which the tooth cannot be saved. This may occur because of severe decay, an injury to the tooth or the jaw or as a result of advanced gum disease. If your tooth can be saved, your dentist will usually recommend a crown to cover and protect damaged tooth enamel. A root canal may also be recommended to remove any decayed or damaged portions of the tooth and to replace it with an inert dental substance. A crown can then be applied to the tooth to provide structural support.

If a root canal does not resolve the problem or if your tooth is too badly damaged to save, an extraction can provide fast relief and can clear the way for an implant or bridge that can replace the non-viable tooth. Your dental office in Detroit will let you know how to proceed if an extraction procedure is the right choice for you.

The Two Types of Extractions

Dental extractions are generally categorized into simple extractions and surgical extractions:

  • During a simple extraction, your dentist will use instruments called elevators and forceps to remove your tooth. This may require a good deal of force, which you will typically feel as pressure during the extraction process.
  • Surgical extractions are required for more complex procedures that involve pressure on adjacent teeth or broken teeth with roots still in the jaw. Your dentist may recommend sedation for these procedures to minimize any pain or discomfort.

What About Wisdom Teeth?

You may be wondering if you need to have your wisdom teeth removed. While it was a part of dental routine to remove wisdom teeth for many years, dentists today may decide to leave these teeth in place if they are not pressing on other teeth or causing other issues. The American Dental Association currently recommends the removal of wisdom teeth if they are causing pain, damage to adjacent teeth, infections or if they are severely decayed. Wisdom teeth may also be removed to reduce the chance of developing gum disease. You can discuss the retention or removal of your wisdom teeth with your dentist to determine which approach is best suited to your needs.

Getting Ready for an Extraction Procedure

Before deciding on an extraction for your tooth, your dentist will take an X-ray of your mouth to determine the exact condition of the damaged or broken tooth. You will need to discuss a few other issues with your dentist before the extraction procedure, including the following:

  • What type of sedation you will need for your procedure
  • What type of extraction will be performed
  • Whether you will receive an implant, bridge or denture to replace your missing tooth
  • If you become ill during the days leading up to your extraction, you should also let your dentist know that you may need to delay the procedure until you feel well again.

The Basics of Tooth Extraction

If you have had heart disease, bacterial endocarditis, liver disease or have received replacement joints or valves, your dentist will need to know about these conditions when planning for your extraction.

  • After a procedure, bacteria can sometimes migrate to replacement joints or to valves to create pockets of infection. Letting your dentist know that you have artificial valves or joints can allow a greater degree of control over these issues.
  • People who have immune system disorders may also be at a higher risk for infection. The same is true of people with diabetes. If you have either of these conditions, make sure your dentist knows well in advance of your procedure.
  • Heart problems can have an impact on the types of anesthesia it is safe for you to receive. If you have heart disease or other problems linked to your cardiovascular system, your dentist will need to adjust certain elements of your treatment plan to accommodate these issues.
  • If you take blood thinners or suffer from a disease that causes uncontrolled bleeding, you should let your dentist know before your appointment for an extraction.

Working with a knowledgeable dentist in Detroit is the best way to protect your health and to promote the best outcomes from all your dental procedures. Your dentist will work with you to make sure your treatment plan is appropriate and designed just for you.

After Your Tooth Removal Procedure

Immediately after your tooth has been removed, your dentist will place a gauze pad or pack over the resulting hole. You will usually be asked to bite down on this gauze, which will allow it to absorb blood from your extraction site. This is also helpful in forming a blood clot, which is necessary for proper healing.

Your dentist will provide you with instructions on how to care for your mouth and your gums after your extraction. In general, avoid applying suction to the site for at least two days following the extraction. This will allow the blood clot to settle properly and will promote healing for your mouth after a procedure. Soft foods are recommended for a few days after a surgical or simple extraction.

Working with a knowledgeable dentist in Detroit can help you manage your dental care more effectively and in a proactive way. Your dentist is the best source of reliable information about extractions and other dental procedures in our area.

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