Tooth extractions take place for a number of reasons, such as wisdom tooth removal, fractures, and tooth decay. Extractions are a prerequisite for certain restorative procedures such as installing a dental implant or creating custom-fit dentures. The tooth extraction procedure should be painless, as anesthetic is used to numb the surgical area. Summit Dental Care can make the process of having a tooth extracted as smooth as possible, and our professionals will be with you every step of the way.
How Is a Tooth Extracted?
Tooth extraction begins with an appointment in which our dentist will examine the tooth that needs extracting. This need for extraction may have come about due to pain, leading the patient to book an appointment knowing extraction may be a possible outcome, or because our dentist advised an extraction during a checkup. If our team notices significant decay, or a wisdom tooth that could be problematic for the dental arch, they will advise the removal of the tooth.
On the day of the tooth extraction, the patient will be given local anesthetic to numb the area of extraction. General anesthetic is occasionally used instead of local anesthesia. The extraction usually takes 20 minutes, as there is nothing complicated involved. The dentist will use a tool called an "elevator" to loosen the tooth in the socket. This allows for the forceps to gently tug it out of its place and remove it completely from the mouth. In some cases, the tooth will come out in parts. This is not unusual, especially if the tooth has been affected by decay.
Having a friend or family member accompany you to the extraction is advised, as the patient will need someone to drive you home. The anesthetic will still be affecting the patient for a few hours, so aftercare instructions will be provided to ensure the most effective recovery.
What Aftercare Is Involved?
The patient will want to have the next 24 to 48 hours off from work, and not to arrange any social events, as the patient will need to recover from their extraction. Our professionals will give the patient aftercare instructions to which they will have to adhere. These will include when to take medication to prevent pain and promote healing, and rules of when the patient can and cannot do certain activities. For example, for the first 24 hours, the patient cannot smoke or drink alcohol.
There will be bleeding, and the patient will have gauze and cotton in their mouth when they leave our office. The patient will need to only have soft and cold foods for the next 24 hours. Hot and spicy foods can irritate the extraction area and disrupt the healing process. The patient cannot rinse their mouth or brush the extraction area for the first 24 hours. The fatigue and moderate pain associated with the extraction should subside within 24 to 48 hours, with all pain gone within 1 to 2 weeks.
Summit Dental Care can support you through this entire process. To book a check-up now, contact our office at 206-292-9980.