extractions are a fairly common procedure. Wisdom teeth often cause problems as
they are trying to protrude through the gums. For instance, when a wisdom tooth is
impacted, it’s coming in at an angle and not straight through the gum line.
This can cause pain, the tooth can come in unevenly, or the tooth may only
emerge partially. Extractions may also be performed on loose, broken or
irreplaceable teeth. Fortunately, in many cases
regular checkups are the most effective preventative measure before a tooth removal may become necessary.
When a wisdom tooth only emerges partially a flap of skin, called an operculum, may mover the tooth. This can make the tooth hard to clean, and pieces of food may be caught under the gum. This makes it easy for an infection, called pericoronitis, to develop. It will usually go away on its own, but it causes swelling and pain in the area.
Impacted teeth can also cause problems like infection and need to be removed. Extractions can range from a single tooth to removing all four wisdom teeth at once. Based on the preference of the doctor and/or the patient, a local anesthetic can be used to numb the area where the teeth will be extracted. Sutures may also be needed to help the healing process.
surgery you will need to rest. You may need to be driven home by a friend or
family member because of the anesthesia. You can expect for the extraction site
to bleed for a little while after the surgery. Gauze will be applied at the
completion of the surgery, and you will need to change it when it becomes
soaked. If bleeding continues for longer than 24 hours you should call your
dentist. Rest when you return home, but do not lie flat. This could prolong the
bleeding. Prop your head up on a pillow when lying down. Your dentist will
prescribe you pain medication, so if you become sore take as directed. You can
also use an ice pack for the pain. Your dentist might also provide you with a
cleaning solution to clean the extraction site.
You will be limited to soft foods for a few days after your surgery. Some
recommended foods are:
- Mashed potatoes
- Ice cream
- Thin soups
- ...and other foods that don’t require chewing
When drinking, make sure you do not use a straw.
The sucking motion can loosen your sutures and slow the clotting process. The
same goes for smoking. If you have prolonged pain, bleeding, irritation, or
don't feel that the extraction site is healing properly call your dentist for a
When removing a tooth it is important to consider what will be done with the empty space after that tooth is removed. Wisdom teeth are in the back of the mouth, so that area will heal on its own with no complications. If necessary to remove another tooth, plans must be made. If a tooth is removed and nothing is done with the extraction site, the jaw bone will degenerate and change shape during healing and can cause your teeth to shift. this can create problems in your bite and affect your ability to speak and chew.
If you want to fill the space with a dental
implant, a sturdy jaw bone is necessary to install the implant. If you opt for
a dental bridge, the bridge must be molded and placed before the teeth shift. A partial denture could also be a considered replacement option.
Your dentist is always open to a conversation on
what you would like to do with your extraction site before removing a tooth.
They will be able to make a recommendation and layout a treatment plan. Make
sure to schedule follow up appointments to properly care for your extraction