At Klooster Family Dentistry, we know how much you value your natural smile. It’s why we emphasize preventative care, to keep decay in check before it’s too late. But as a last resort, tooth removal – or extraction – is sometimes required. A tooth overgrown with plaque can cause problems for healthy teeth around it, and removing it is a form of damage control.
Obviously extraction is not something people get excited about, and we know that the procedure can be overwhelming. That’s why our experienced dentists focus first and foremost on your comfort, and take the time to explore every option for replacing an extracted tooth.
Reasons for Extraction
There are a variety of reasons for extraction, some preventative and some restorative. The two most common reasons are:
- Crowding: abnormal tooth growth causes crowding, where normal teeth have no room to grow. This can cause serious pain, misalignment, and other issues. Wisdom teeth are frequent culprits here, and extraction of them or other teeth may be required for braces and similar procedures.
- Infection: sometimes tooth decay is so severe that it extends to the The pulp is the core of your teeth, the nerves and blood vessels buried deep beneath the enamel. Infection here can easily spread to other teeth or even throughout your body. Extraction is a possible solution.
Extraction may also be necessary after physical trauma, or to prevent infection in those with compromised immune systems (such as cancer patients.)
Procedure and Sedation
Modern techniques allow tooth extraction to be performed in minutes. The procedure uses slow, deliberate pressure to gently remove the tooth from the gums and underlying bone. If a tooth is trapped below the gums, incisions and stitches may be required. Don’t worry; the stitches are self-dissolving.
All extractions are performed with some sort of local anesthetic, and patients will experience no pain. But we recognize that many of our patients experience dental phobia that makes extraction especially frightening. We offer a variety of sedation options, and will discuss them before your extraction to make sure you’re informed and prepared.
After your tooth is removed, there are several options for replacement.
- Bridge: a dental bridge affixes an artificial tooth to the real ones surrounding your extraction.
- Implants: an artificial tooth can be implanted in your gums in the same spot as your extraction.
- Denture: a non-invasive option that affixes to your gums and surrounding teeth.
Your dentist will discuss all available replacement options with you, including their costs, required care, and lifespan.
A tooth extraction is a big deal, and not something we take lightly. Our experienced dentists will explore all options with you before and after your procedure, with the goal of making you comfortable and confident in your decision.