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Posted on: December 29, 2021
What to Expect with a Tooth Extraction
No one likes to hear they need a tooth removed, but sometimes it is necessary. Dentists would prefer to save permanent teeth whenever possible and will do everything it takes to fix decay and broken teeth. For example, you may have a badly decayed tooth that a root canal could not save. An extraction can keep the infection from spreading, saving your other teeth. You may also need a tooth removed to relieve overcrowding, so your teeth can be straight. Dentists also recommend an extraction if a tooth is trapped under your gums, or impacted.
Teeth extractions should not hurt if all goes according to plan. There are simple extractions, where your dentist simply pulls out a visible tooth. There are also surgical extractions, where the dentist has to cut the gum to reach the tooth. Whichever procedure you need, your dentist will make sure the area is numb before starting. You may also have IV sedation or laughing gas if you’re having a surgical extraction as they take a little longer. You may feel a little pressure, but the pain sensations should be blocked during the procedure.
A caring dentist in Wayzata will put you at ease before the procedure by explaining what will happen and what your recovery will be like. You’ll feel a lot better knowing that the procedure is quick, straightforward and virtually painless.
What Will Happen Before My Extraction?
You’ll have the chance to ask any last-minute questions and you can expect a thorough explanation of the procedure. Bring a list of any prescription or OTC medications you take. Your dentist will also ask if you take vitamins or supplements.
You’ll have to provide a complete medical history. Your dentist will be looking for anything that might interfere with your healing or increase your risk of developing an infection. In particular, he or she will look for:
- An impaired immune system
- Liver disease
- Congenital heart defects
- Mechanical heart values
- A history of heart infections
You can also use this time to connect with your insurance provider and the administrative staff to see if your procedure is covered and if you will be responsible for any out-of-pocket costs. Covered extractions are very common, but it will be important to confirm so you don’t encounter any surprises.
What Will Happen After My Extraction?
Simple extractions take about a week to heal; a surgical can take up two two weeks to completely heal. Following the directions supplied by your dentist will help you heal as fast as possible. In about three or four hours, a clot forms in the empty socket. This will aid in healing and stopping any residual bleeding, so it is important not to disturb it.
You can also:
- Rest for at least 24 to 48 hours after your extraction and avoid strenuous activity and exercise.
- Lie with your head elevated or sitting up to prevent the blood from pooling.
- Use ice packs on the first day as directed by your dentist as this will help with swelling and pain.
- Take only pain medicine as your dentist recommends and if you were given an antibiotic, be sure to take it as soon as directed.
- Use a salt water rinse as directed to help with healing and keeping the site clean.
- Do not smoke or use a straw for at least two or three days to prevent dislodging the blood clot forming at the site. If you haven’t already, consider quitting smoking as it inhibits healing.
- Avoid the extraction site when eating or brushing your tooth till it heals.
When you begin eating after your extraction, start with very soft, nutritious foods. Good choices include oatmeal, mashed potatoes and gravy, Jello, or a vegetable soup. While you have to avoid the extraction site, don’t use a straw for at least 72 hours even if it may seem easier.
Smoking is also to be avoided. It can not only dislodge the clot; all tobacco use inhibits healing.
If you notice any:
- Excessive bleeding or swelling
- Nausea or vomiting
- If you have extreme pain – you may have dislodged the clot
- A fever or chills can indicate an infection
Contact your dentist’s office right away.
Wisdom Teeth Extractions
You might wonder why so many teens and young adults get their wisdom teeth extracted. If these four third molars are not necessary, why do we even get them? Our ancestors used to eat a diet that was mainly raw foods, but we don’t need wisdom teeth any more to chew the raw food. In fact, many people don’t have room for the teeth to grow in straight. There are exceptions; some individuals have third molars that grown in perfectly straight and don’t cause any problems.
Unluckily, may individuals find their wisdom teeth trapped underneath their gums or find that the teeth grow in crooked. Teeth trapped under the gums can cause infections or cysts, creating a painful experience for a patient. Wisdom teeth that grown in awkwardly can cause pain as they press against other teeth and they will be challenging to keep clean.
Some dentists recommend extracting wisdom teeth before they emerge if they have the potential to cause issues. Your dentist may tell you that it’s easier to have the procedure done while you are young and your teeth have not fully formed or erupted from the gums. You will also heal faster as long as you follow the proper aftercare instructions and avoid infections.
Other dentists don’t believe in removing the wisdom teeth until they are actually causing problems because it is not assured that they will actually cause problems. For a lot of people, the wisdom teeth erupt and do not interfere with the other teeth. However, these dentists will want to make sure you come in for regular check ups and x-rays to ensure the wisdom teeth are growing in correctly.
Some patients don’t want to run the risk of an infection and cost can also be a factor. Talk to a trusted affordable dentist in Wayzata about the pros and cons of proactive wisdom teeth removal.