Extracting a tooth is often performed when a tooth cannot be saved or is impacting your dental health. For instance, a tooth may need to be removed if there is a significant amount of tooth decay, loss of tooth structure, or dental abscess. Tooth extractions are one of the most common general dental services.
Dr. Richard Keech may recommend a tooth extraction for these reasons:
- Impacted wisdom teeth
- Overcrowding of the teeth
- Extensive tooth damage
At Keech Family Dentistry, we work with you to make you feel as comfortable as possible through all aspects of your care. Our digital dental office is equipped with state of the art dental technology, which allows us to take a more detailed and comprehensive approach to your dental care.
Wisdom Teeth Removal
Many patients develop wisdom teeth during their late teens or early twenties. Your wisdom teeth are considered your third pair of molars, which are located in the back of the mouth.
In many cases, there is not enough room for your wisdom teeth to grow, which often leads to overcrowding. In other cases, the wisdom teeth do not fully emerge from the gums, which is commonly referred to as impacted wisdom teeth. In both scenarios, the wisdom teeth will need to be removed to avoid a more complicated issue from arising.
If wisdom teeth lead to overcrowding, it can cause misaligned or crooked teeth. In advanced cases, overcrowded teeth can increase the risk of chips and fractures in the teeth. When impacted wisdom teeth are left unaddressed, patients may experience periodic dental pain, or it may even lead to a dental abscess.
Extracting the wisdom teeth can not only alleviate dental pain and discomfort, but it can also improve your oral health. Due to their location, wisdom teeth are difficult to clean therefore increasing the risk of dental decay. When wisdom teeth are removed, patients can easily clean their teeth, which helps reduce the risk of dental decay.
When Should I Get My Wisdom Teeth Removed?
There isn’t a set age to remove your wisdom teeth. However, most dentists would recommend getting them removed at a younger age because younger patients tend to heal more quickly. Routine visits to our office allow our team to determine the best time to remove your wisdom teeth.
Should Wisdom Teeth Always Be Removed?
Most dentists recommend the removal of wisdom teeth. The most common reason is that there is typically not enough room in the mouth to support the wisdom teeth; this can impact your dental health and lead to future complications.
Patients who do not get their wisdom teeth removed are at a higher risk of occlusal issues, gum disease, dental abscesses, and cavities.
How is Tooth Extraction Performed?
How your extraction is performed depends on several factors. For simple tooth extractions, the tooth is above the gum line and can be removed fully intact. For a more complicated extraction or impacted wisdom teeth extraction, the tooth may need to be extracted in pieces.
To determine which type of extraction your needs, Dr. Keech will take digital x-rays of the mouth to locate the position of your teeth and assess the surrounding bone structure. With the results from your x-ray, he will create a comprehensive treatment plan that is right for you.
In some cases, a simple tooth extraction can be completed in one visit with a local anesthetic. Once you are comfortable and numb, the ligaments that are surrounding the affected tooth are gently rocked back and forth until they are separated.
During this process, you may feel minor pressure. However, we make sure you are comfortable and relaxed throughout all phases of your care. Once the tooth is removed, we will apply a soft gauze to minimize bleeding.
It is important to follow your aftercare instructions to avoid complications. Minor bleeding and swelling are normal in the first few hours after an extraction. However, if you notice any adverse symptoms, you should contact our office right away. If necessary, we may schedule an emergency dental visit.
Replacing Extracted Teeth
Wisdom teeth do not need to be replaced. However, if one of your permanent teeth are extracted, it will more than likely need to be replaced. Depending on the number and location of your extracted tooth, Dr. Keech may recommend dental implants, dentures, or a dental bridge to restore your smile. Replacing missing teeth is imperative to how well your teeth function and your overall dental health.