Tooth extraction involves the surgical removal of the tooth from the mouth’s supporting structure. Although many people are still very apprehensive at the prospect of tooth removal, the process is relatively simple and inexpensive. There are a variety of reasons that may cause your dentist to recommend extraction. While dentists always strive to save your natural tooth whenever possible, and crowns and fillings can help repair damaged teeth and deep cavities, sometimes these treatments are ineffective. If a tooth has lost bone to support it, has irreversible infection, is decayed or otherwise broken down, the best option may be to have it removed. For patients with more severe deterioration in the mouth, several, or even all teeth, may need to be removed, and replaced with implants, bridges or dentures.
With children, extraction may sometimes be necessary to allow for the eruption of new teeth and to help those teeth grow into their normal position. Removal may also be needed to alleviate crowding and simply create additional space in the mouth for orthodontic work. Sometimes selection removal of teeth may help prevent progression of tooth decay, gum disease, cyst formation and a variety of dental infections affecting teeth and bone structure.
Wisdom teeth are quite commonly extracted, or are removed to treat bleeding, swelling or infections resulting from a wisdom tooth’s partial eruption. These problems normally occur when the wisdom teeth are not in an upright position or there is insufficient room in the mouth to accommodate them. Impacted teeth emerge in the wrong position and if they get trapped in the gums or jawbone, this can be a very painful and result in infections. It may be decided to remove an erupted wisdom tooth because of the inability to clean the area effectively, leading to possible infection of the surrounding gum or bone or the development of caries affecting adjacent teeth. Wisdom teeth that have not yet erupted may be removed to prevent the possible development of cysts or tumours. The decision to extract wisdom teeth is usually based on the risks of leaving the tooth in place versus the potential problems that could arise if it were removed. Wisdom teeth themselves are often removed when the patient is in their late teens or early twenties, when any potential risks related to their retention may pose can best be determined. After studying your X-rays, it may be determined that one or more of your wisdom teeth are likely to cause a problem. Your dentist may recommend early extraction to avoid any further issues.
A simple tooth extraction can be performed under local anesthesia and is a relatively straightforward procedure. Forceps and elevators are used to grab the part of the tooth visible above the gum. The tooth is then moved back and forth in order to widen the hole in which the tooth is lodged. Once the hole becomes large enough, the tooth can be removed with little trouble.
The surgical removal of teeth is more complicated, since a tooth that may have partially erupted and broken up beneath the gum line can’t be clearly seen and is not easily accessible. In these cases, using sufficient local anesthesia to ensure that the procedure is as comfortable as possible, bone and soft tissue may have to be cut in order the access the tooth. Sometimes the damaged tooth may need to be broken into several pieces so that it can be completely removed.
Either type of procedure can result in minor pain, bleeding and swelling after surgery is completed. However, medications are often used to keep infection at bay and ease discomfort, combined with home care advice to assist you in achieving a speed recovery.
Crown lengthening is a surgical procedure performed to expose more tooth structure in order to properly restore a tooth. Perhaps your tooth is decayed, broken below the gum line, or has insufficient tooth structure for a restoration, such as a crown or bridge. Crown lengthening adjusts the gum and bone level to expose more of the tooth so it can be restored.
Some people have a lot of gum tissue around their upper teeth and feel their teeth are too short, also referred to as “gummy smile.” Your teeth may actually be the proper lengths, but they’re covered with too much gum tissue which gives the appearance of short and sometimes uneven smile. Crown lengthening can help correct this.