What You Need to Know About Tooth Extractions

The phrase, “tooth extraction” is just another way to say you’re having a tooth pulled. It’s an outpatient procedure your Saugus, MA dentist does in their office. Most of the time, the dentist will try other treatment options first before deciding on tooth extraction. It’s always best if you can keep your natural teeth, but in some instances, it’s simply not possible.

What are the reasons dentists perform tooth extractions?

There are two common reasons teeth are pulled by a Saugus Dentist. Many people need to have wisdom teeth removed when they become impacted, infected, or if there simply isn’t enough room for them in their mouths. The other common tooth extraction is when preparing for braces or retainers. To make room for the teeth to be moved into proper alignment, the mouth often needs more room and removing one or more teeth gives the extra room needed. Another reason a dentist may need to pull a tooth is when there is too much damage or decay for it to be repaired using a crown or a filling.

What is it like to get a tooth pulled?

When you visit your Saugus and North Boston area dentist and explain any problems you are having with your teeth, they will do a complete examination. If the dentist deems a tooth or teeth need to be removed they will use a local anesthetic to numb the area around the tooth. For those who deal with anxiety, a mild sedative or anti-anxiety medication may be administered. There are two categories for having teeth pulled. One method is simple and the other is surgical. These are handled in different ways.

Simple Tooth Extraction

If the problem is with a tooth that is visible, a simple extraction can be used to remove it. This includes getting a tooth that is damaged, cracked or decayed removed, as well as removing teeth to allow room in the mouth. General dentists perform simple extractions. Patients are given local anesthesia to deaden the area for the procedure. Over-the-counter pain medications are typically enough to help manage the pain following the procedure.

Surgical Tooth Extraction

Oral surgeons perform surgical extractions. This is more involved than a simple tooth removal. A surgical operation is needed to remove teeth that are not visible in the mouth. They may not be visible because they haven’t come in yet, like with wisdom teeth. Or they may have broken off. Patients who have special medical concerns or conditions often receive general anesthesia before teeth are pulled surgically. You may also be given a prescription for pain medication to use following the surgical procedure.

Recovery Following A Tooth Extraction

Prior to the tooth extraction, Dr. Stephen Petinge will provide you with instructions for your care. Be sure to follow the directions you are given for oral care. These will usually include a couple of things like:

  •       Soft Food Diet: You will most likely be instructed to eat only soft foods for a few days following the extraction. But you’ll probably need to stick to solely liquids until all the effects of the anesthesia wear off.
  •       Oral Care: For just the first day following the procedure you’ll want to refrain from brushing the teeth immediately next to the space where the tooth was removed. You can, however, brush the rest of your teeth. After two days, you will probably be able to go back to your normal oral care routine.

Contact A Saugus Dentist

If you have one or more teeth that are giving you trouble, please schedule an exam with Dr. Stephen Petinge. If decay is caught early enough or damage is minimal, a tooth can likely be treated and saved. If not, a dentist can schedule a tooth extraction for you. Contact us today to schedule your exam.