Protect your Oral Health with Safe Tooth Extraction
No one wants a tooth extraction, but sometimes it’s the best way to relieve your discomfort and protect your future oral health. At Freedom Dental, Cheng Zhu, DMD, evaluates your tooth pain and health to determine if a tooth extraction is right for you. Call the office in Fairfield, California, or book an appointment online today.
Tooth Extractions Q & A
What is a tooth extraction?
When you have a decayed or damaged tooth that cannot be repaired or saved, Dr. Zhu usually recommends extraction. Once an infection, decay, or injury spreads through the deepest layers of a tooth, extraction may be the only option for treatment.
Dr. Zhu may recommend a tooth extraction to relieve your pain, restore your bite, and protect your teeth from additional damage.
What happens during a tooth extraction?
Tooth extraction happens in one of two ways:
During a simple extraction, Dr. Zhu uses a special dental tool called an elevator to gently loosen your tooth. He then pulls the crown of the tooth out through the root. Usually, a simple extraction is used if the crown portion of your affected tooth is entirely visible above the gum line.
A surgical extraction is recommended when the affected tooth hasn’t pushed fully through the gum line, such as with an impacted wisdom tooth. A surgical extraction requires Dr. Zhu to make a small incision in your gums. He then extracts the trapped tooth with small dental instruments.
During a complicated surgical extraction, Dr. Zhu may need to break up an impacted tooth to make removal easier.
Why would I need a tooth extraction?
When your tooth is too damaged to treat with crowns, root canal, or other minimally invasive procedures, an extraction may be the best recourse.
Extractions are often recommended in the case of:
- Impacted wisdom teeth
- Severely decayed teeth
- An injured tooth
- A tooth infection
- Crowded teeth
In rare cases, a tooth extraction may be part of an orthodontic procedure.
What happens after a tooth extraction?
Right after removing your tooth and closing your incision, Dr. Zhu packs your mouth with gauze. You should change this gauze after about 45 minutes so that a natural blood clot can form.
After 24 hours, you should be able to brush and floss your teeth, but be careful not to brush near the extraction site. Dr. Zhu may prescribe an anti-inflammatory pain reliever to help alleviate your discomfort.
You’ll be given comprehensive instructions about how to care for your oral health for the days following an extraction. After surgical extraction, for example, you may need to eat soft foods for several days and avoid using a straw.
If you need to schedule an appointment to determine if a tooth extraction is the right treatment for you, call Freedom Dental at (707) 416-0626, or book an appointment online today.