A tooth extraction is needed when the damage to the affected tooth is too extensive, and when no other dental treatment or procedure can save the tooth from being lost. Tooth extractions are also done in preparation for orthodontic procedures like the placement of braces, especially when there are too much teeth in a patients mouth for proper teeth alignment to occur successfully.
Types of Tooth Extractions
Simple Extraction This type of tooth extraction is used for the removal of teeth that will need only the use of instruments to grasp and lift the part of the tooth that is visible. Dental forceps are used with a steady and slow pressure to successfully remove the affected tooth.
Surgical Extraction This tooth extraction type is used when the tooth has not erupted fully, or is under the gum line (just like an impacted wisdom tooth). A surgical extraction requires an incision to be made in the gum surrounding the tooth, and is usually performed by a dental surgeon with the help of a local or general anesthesia.
Complications that May Arise from Tooth Extractions
Infection If the dentist thinks that there is a risk of infection setting in after a tooth extraction, the patient may be given an antibiotic prescription for this.
Swelling The amount of swelling is largely determined by the extent of surgery done to remove the tooth. The swelling is expected to go down within a few hours (or days, depending on the surgery done), and can be managed with medications.
Prolonged Bleeding Bleeding is normal after a tooth extraction, especially if the blood clot in the area has not had a chance to fully form. The bleeding should stop within eight hours after the tooth extraction, with only small amounts in the saliva to be expected. If profuse bleeding does not stop within a day, it is best to go back to the dentist to have the area checked for infection.
Dry Socket This painful condition normally happens with the extraction of the lower wisdom teeth. After the tooth extraction dry socket happens when the blood clot in the affected area is disrupted. A tooth extraction dry socket is not an infection, and can be magnified due to the areas poor blood supply.
Nerve Damage This tooth extraction complication can result when a nerve is too close to the tooth extraction site; nerve damage can occur when the tooth is being lifted, or with the improper use of a dental drill.