How to Protect Your Teeth

What To Expect When You Have A Tooth Extracted

When you have a decayed or broken tooth, your dentist usually prefers to save it rather than pull the tooth. In some cases though, it's necessary to pull a tooth. This may happen if the tooth isn't positioned properly and it pushes against other teeth. There may even be times when you have a toothache and can't afford a root canal and crown so you opt to have the tooth pulled. Although pulling is usually considered a last resort, it is an effective way to deal with a problem tooth. If you're considering having a tooth pulled, here's what you can expect.

Simple Extraction Procedure

A simple tooth extraction is a fairly easy procedure. Your dentist injects anesthetic into the area around the tooth so it is totally numb before it is pulled out. Then the tooth is loosened and pulled out with forceps. In order to grab the tooth and pull it out, there has to be enough healthy enamel that won't crumble under the pressure of the forceps. Pulling out a tooth isn't painful when the area is numbed properly. However, you'll still be able to feel pressure during the procedure, but it shouldn't cause discomfort.

Surgical Extraction

If your tooth has a lot of decay or if it was broken off at the gum level, then it can't be pulled out because there is nothing to grab onto. Instead, your dentist will remove it surgically. This involves making an incision in your gum and cutting out the tooth. The area is numbed first with local anesthesia and you may also receive IV sedation to keep you relaxed. Your gum will be sore after the extraction due to the incision, but it should heal quickly.

Recovery Process

A blood clot forms after your tooth is pulled. The clot is important for recovery so you want to avoid doing anything that disturbs the clot. Initially, you'll need to bite down on gauze to stop bleeding. When the bleeding stops, you'll want to avoid drinking through a straw or smoking because those actions might dislodge the clot. When that happens, you could develop dry socket, which is a painful condition.

It's important to follow your dentist's instructions for the recovery process. Some things you may need to do include sleep with your head elevated, avoid hot foods, and postpone strenuous activity. Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics as well as pain medication for the first few days after the procedure. You'll heal more quickly from a simple extraction, but you should expect to eat soft foods for about a week while your gum heals. For more information, contact companies like Renovo Endodontic Studio.