|We have implemented new protocols for our patient's and staff's safety. Please see our updated covid protocols for when you visit us.|
Posted on 11/15/2015 by Dr. Michael Allard
|Are you slated to have a tooth surgically extracted? This can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially if you don't know exactly what to expect. By better understanding the tooth extraction process, you can feel better prepared for your procedure.
Preparing for Your ExtractionBefore you have a tooth extraction or any other invasive dental procedure, you will want to review your health history with your dentist. If you have a replacement joint like a hip or total knee, you may need to take antibiotics before you have the procedure completed. This is also true for people with replacement heart valves or heart murmurs. You'll also need to review the medications that you are currently taking, as taking blood thinners or rugs that will inhibit platelet aggregation could be problematic. Your dentist may ask you to stop taking these medications prior to your procedure due to the possibility of prolonged bleeding.
Pain ControlYour dentist will administer an anesthetic prior to your procedure in order to keep you comfortable throughout the experience. A local anesthetic will be injected into the nerve that allows the affected tooth to experience pain sensations. If you are worried about the injection or don't like needles, your dentist may be able to put a topical numbing gel onto your gums a couple of minutes before the injection to minimize discomfort.
Removing the ToothYour dentist will determine if the tooth is visible, and if it is not, he or she will need to make an incision into the gum to expose it. The gum tissues will be gently moved aside in order to expose the tooth. Next, your dentist will release the periodontal ligament that connects the tooth to the socket. In some cases, your dentist may need to remove some of the bone around the tooth so that the ligament can be completely removed.
Next, your dentist will go about removing the tooth. In many cases, he or she will place a gauze "safety net" into the back of the mouth in order to prevent the tooth from being inhaled or swallowed after it is taken out. In some cases, your dentist may need to section the tooth, meaning it will need to be broken into individual pieces to take it out safely. The shape and number of roots will be deciding factors.
Next, the tooth will be loosened within the socket by placing leverage with an elevating instrument. There are a variety of different elevators that can be used depending on the size and shape of the tooth. Elevation will enlarge the socket enough to take out the tooth.
Optional ProceduresThere are a few additional procedures that might also be performed depending on the situation:
After the tooth is out, your dentist will apply pressure to the socket to minimize bleeding, and you'll be given instructions on how to properly care for your mouth. If you experience bleeding after you leave the office, place pressure onto the gums with a piece of gauze for up to 30 minutes.
If you have questions about your upcoming surgical tooth extraction, contact our office. We can help to put your mind at ease about the procedure.