Dental extraction, scientifically known and exodontia is a routine chair side surgical procedure performed at the dental surgery. In the older times, extraction was the only option available for treatment of a dental infection, however modern dentistry looks towards extraction as the last resort and all preventive and reparative options for tooth restoration are utilized prior to pulling a tooth out.
Reasons for Extraction
Mobile or Retained Milk Teeth
Milk teeth of children usually shed away as soon as the permanent teeth are ready to erupt. However, in a few instances, these teeth may remain adhered or remain hanging around the gums. In these cases, a dentist may decide to extract the milk tooth so as to make way for the permanent teeth to erupt.
Minor tooth infections are best treated by fillings or prescription of antibiotics. However, in certain conditions, the progression of infection is so widespread that there is no other option but to extract the tooth. Poor oral hygiene plays an important role in development of tooth inaction and premature tooth loss. In other cases, infection persists or reappears in spite of multiple previous endodontic or antibiotic therapy. Such conditions also warrant tooth extraction.
Sometimes, the permanent teeth become overcrowded in the oral cavity. It has been show that tooth crowding impairs adequate dental hygiene maintain ace, as well serves as ideal location for deposition of dental plaque and bacterial colonization. Hence, an orthodontist may decide to extract teeth, usually second premolars or wisdom teeth to reduce crowding.
This condition refers to a periodical infection of the surrounding gums and the operculum of the partially erupted wisdom teeth. Symptoms include pain and discomfort in the effected region, while immediate management involves meticulous oral hygiene maintenance and gargles with salt water to reduce inflammation. Long term treatment requires extraction of the wisdom teeth.
What to Expect During Dental Extraction
A dentist or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon usually performs extraction. Prior to any surgical dental procedure, a medical examination is performed to ensure that the patient’s blood pressure and glucose levels are normal, as aggravation of both these conditions prevent ideal healing of extraction wound. Furthermore, it is ensured that the patient is not taking any blood thinning or anti-coagulant drugs as they can prevent clotting of blood after surgery.
After the medical checkup, a dental anesthesia is given to the patient to numb the area of surgical interest. In case of nervous and highly apprehensive patients, conscious sedation or general anesthesia in extreme conditions might be considered by the dentist.
In certain cases where teeth do not fully erupt or in cases where routine extraction is not possible, a “surgical resection” of the teeth is performed. This involves detaching the surrounding gums, removing a part of the alveolar bone and exposing the junction of the tooth and root. After taking the tooth out, the gum flap is sutured back to its place, and finally a prescription of analgesics and antibiotics is prescribed if necessary.
Instructions Immediately After Extraction
After routine extraction procedures, dentists place a cotton over the extraction site to aid in blood clotting. This cotton should be kept in mouth for the time instructed by the dentist, and then discarded. Failure to discard or retaining the cotton in the oral cavity for prolonged time may result in poor healing or even re-infection.
After about 30 minutes of extraction, intake of an ice-cream or a cold juice is encouraged. This helps in clot formation. Similarly, patients are advised to take soft diet and not to eat from the side where surgery has been performed for at least one day after extraction. This is done in order to provide sufficient time for healing
What to Expect After the Surgery
After extraction, especially after surgical tooth resection, some pain and swelling are common for a few days. Applying cold to the effected on the region, followed by heat therapy on the successive days helps in quick recovery of inflammation. However, if pain or swelling persists beyond a week, it would be best to visit your dentist for a checkup.
Is Dental Extraction Safe?
Dental extraction is a safe surgical procedure, provided appropriate care regarding cross infection control and anesthesia is undertaken.