Taking care of oral health is important not only for your general health but also for improving your smile aesthetic appearance. Tooth extraction is one of the most dreaded dental treatment procedures because patients assume it is very painful. However, the procedure is not excruating if you seek the services of a skilled and experienced dentist. At Northridge Dentist, we take pride in our ability to provide our prospective patients with a family-oriented atmosphere for comfort while undergoing tooth extraction. In this article, you learn about tooth extraction and general dentistry.

Tooth Extraction Overview

Tooth extraction, also known as exodontia, is a dental procedure done by dentists or oral surgeons. It involves the removal of a tooth from its socket that is held by the jaw bone. Typically, tooth extraction is done after your dentist has tried all dental restorative procedures without success. Many patients opt for tooth extraction because it’s less expensive than other dental restoration procedures such as crown placement or decayed tooth filling.

Reasons Why People Choose Tooth Extraction

Apart from the fact that tooth extraction is cheaper, it is also the only option to consider when dentistry procedures such as root canal are not possible. Also, a dental illness caused by a bacterial infection can cause pain and make you restless or uneasy; hence, the need for quick tooth extraction. Some of the reasons why people opt for tooth extraction include:

  1. Orthodontic Treatment

Orthodontic treatment is a process that involves correction and straightening of misaligned teeth and jaws. Some orthodontic treatment methods, such as braces, require removal of crowded teeth to create space for more improved teeth alignment.

  1. Severe Tooth Damage

Severe tooth damage happens when the tooth is broken/cracked, or there is an extensive decay beyond repair. If you have a broken tooth or a one that has failed to erupt or develop, you should consider visiting a dentist for an extraction. Removing a visible tooth is less involving compared to removing a tooth that has broken below the gum surface. If you have a tooth decay or periodontal gum disease affecting a tooth, you must remove the affected tooth.

  1. Extra Teeth

The growth of an extra tooth is a condition characterized by the growth of excess teeth than usual. When an extra tooth blocks another tooth from developing, you’ll need to extract it to create space for other teeth development.

  1. Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is a type of drug treatment where patients use powerful chemicals to kill abnormal fast-growing cells in the body like cancerous ones. When you undergo chemotherapy frequently, the body immune weakens, and the risk of tooth infections rises. When you get a bacterial tooth infection, an extraction could best the only option to prevent the bacteria from spreading.

  1. Malpositioned Teeth

Usually, every tooth should be directly opposite to each other on the upper and lower jaws such that every tooth has its partner to bite with on the opposite jaw. If you’ve got an extra tooth with no opposing tooth to “bite” with, you might need to extract the extra tooth for proper teeth positioning.

  1. Organ Transplant

Organ transplant involves the transfer of a body organ from one person (donor) to another (recipient). Immunosuppressive drugs prescribed by a specialist after undergoing an organ transplant increase a patient’s chances of getting teeth infection. Tooth extraction could prevent the spread of bacteria infection.

Teeth That are Commonly Extracted

Most dentists will tell you that tooth extraction is a normal procedure for better dental health. At some point in life, you may require to remove some of your teeth to prevent future potential dental problems or to create space for orthodontics. Below are examples of commonly removed teeth amongst most people:

  1. Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are one of the most common types of teeth that require extraction. Wisdom teeth are the last third set of molars teeth that grows during the teenage years or early twenties. Most dentists recommend removing these three wisdom teeth to prevent future potential complications, such as impacted teeth. An impacted tooth is surfaced and lacks enough room to grow when you don’t extract your wisdom teeth early. Impacted teeth also attract other oral health complications such as interference in biting, gum disease, teeth infection, and decay of adjacent teeth.

  1. Permanent Teeth

Permanent teeth such as canines (fangs) require extraction before undergoing an orthodontic treatment procedure. The purpose of extracting permanent teeth is to create space for orthodontic treatment methods such as braces used for teeth correction and alignment. Removal of permanent teeth is a medical procedure essential for people with misaligned and malpositioned teeth.

Types of Teeth Extraction Methods

The choice of the kind of method to use during tooth extraction is a decision your dentist makes after careful consideration and examination of your dental issue. Depending on the nature of the damaged tooth or extent of the tooth infection, a dentist will use either one of the following extraction methods to treat his/her patients.

  1. Surgical Extraction

Surgical extraction is necessary when a tooth has not erupted fully or in situations where a tooth is damaged/broken below the gum surface. The procedure entails the removal of teeth that cannot easily be reached in the mouth and are hard to see. Surgical tooth extraction is a medical procedure performed by specialists such as dentists and oral surgeons.

Due to the complexity of this procedure and pain involved, dentists use both intravenous anesthesia and local anesthesia to make the patient relaxed and calm. Depending on the type of medication you are on, you might also receive general anesthesia for this procedure.

The dentist might need to cut your tooth or remove the bone around your tooth before extracting the affected tooth. Northridge Dentist has trusted and reputable professionals you can trust with surgical tooth extraction procedures and other dentistry issues.

  1. Simple Extraction

The simple extraction method is only possible if the teeth are visible or are within reach. Just like its name, this method of tooth extraction is less complicated and involves the use of local anesthesia to numb the area surrounding the infected/damaged tooth. With local anesthesia, the patient might not even need sedatives or anti-anxiety medications for calmness and relaxation. A simple tooth extraction might also be vital when a dentist is fixing braces through orthodontic treatment.

Preparations for a Tooth Extraction Surgery

Before a tooth extraction surgery, it’s always wise to discuss your dental and medical histories with your dentists and X-rays. Most dentists will prescribe the use of antibiotics before the commencement of the tooth extraction surgery.

Before tooth extraction surgery, antibiotics are more likely to be prescribed to patients with underlying infections, weak body immune systems, those undergoing longer surgeries, elderly and young people.

When you’re preparing for a tooth extraction surgery, it’s wise to discuss all your prescribed medication history with your dentist, including the herbal and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs you’re currently taking. Some drugs such as aspirin and ginseng slow down the blood clotting process.

Most patients prefer the use of sedatives to relax before any tooth extraction procedure. The most commonly used sedation dentistry option includes:

  • Intranervous sedative involves the use of drug injection into the patient's veins

  • Use of nitrogen oxide (laughing gas)It’s a sweet-smelling gas with mild anesthetic effects

  • Oral sedativesThese are medications that patients have to swallow, such as the Valium pill

Use of nitrogen oxide as anesthesia cannot affect a patient's ability to drive a vehicle; however, if you’ve chosen other sedation methods, you might need someone else to drive you from the dentist. You should not consume any food or drink anything for at least six hours before tooth extraction surgery.

Modern Means of Tooth Extraction

Although surgical cutting instruments such as dental drills and scalpels are still commonly used during surgical tooth extractions, modern technology like electrosurgery and dental lasers is also growing fast. Electrosurgery involves using controlled heat to cut through the gum, while laser uses controlled high-energy light rays to cut through the gum flesh.

Use of these modern tooth extraction surgical aids such as electrosurgery is preferred nowadays during tooth extraction. It’s more accurate when cutting the gum than traditional tooth extraction surgical aids such as scalpel and drills. At Northridge Dentist center, we guarantee our patients a comfortable environment and the best dental care, which involves using advanced modern technology to ease any dental treatment procedure that our patients undertake.

Tooth Extraction Aftercare and Recovery

After tooth extraction, the most crucial exercise is to encourage blood clot formation at the extraction site. After tooth extraction, the dentist provides you with a roll or a gauze pad, which you’re supposed to bite gently to apply pressure on the extraction site to help in clot formation.

Once a blood clot forms, it should not be removed. The recovery process is supposed to take a few days, depending on how you take care of the extraction site. The following are some of the steps necessary to facilitate fast healing of the tooth extraction site:

  • Make sure you get a rest for the first 24 hours of extraction to relax

  • Avoid smoking

  • When you lie down, you might need a cozy pillow to prop the head

  • Make sure you take all the prescribed medications accordingly including the painkillers received over the counter

  • Immediately after an extraction procedure, you should consider applying an ice pack directly to the cheek to reduce swelling

  • Avoid use straws when drinking

  • Don’t rinse your mouth until 24 hours after the extraction

  • After extraction, you’ll have to consume soft foods such as puddling or yogurt to avoid harming the extraction site

  • Brush your teeth as usual but cautiously near the tooth extraction site

  • Use salty water to rinse out your mouth after 24 hours of extraction

  • Avoid consuming hot food or liquid

If you observe all the above procedures in caring for the extraction site, you heal fast. Healing should take at least seven days after extraction unless there is a damaged jaw. The healing could delay up to six months if the jaw is damaged. If the pain persists or you notice infection signs, you should consider scheduling an appointment with your dentist again as soon as possible. If your dentist is flexible enough to provide in-house services, it will be better for you. At Northridge Dentist center, we offer all types of dental care you need, even if you want an in-house healing check-up after a dental treatment procedure.

Possible Complications/Risks After a Tooth Extraction Procedure

Patients undergoing tooth extraction might experience a few complications after this procedure. If your dentist recommends tooth extraction, that means the benefits of the process outweigh the potential chances of complications. After tooth extraction, the patient is supposed to take care of the extraction site so that a blood clot can naturally form.

However, if this blood clot dispatches or does not form, the jaw bone inside the tooth socket can be exposed and painful. Exposure of the bone inside the tooth socket after a tooth extraction is known as dry socket. If this happens on your tooth extraction site, you might want to seek a dentist’s services as soon as possible. Other tooth extraction risks/complications include:

  • Numbness of the lip and chinThis is a typical tooth extraction effect after removing lower wisdom teeth. The lower lip and chin may sometimes become numb if the nerves in that area are traumatized during the tooth extraction procedure

  • Sow jawThis is a complication caused by the strain of keeping the mouth open during tooth extraction or sometimes due to the anesthesia used

  • InfectionAn infection might attack the tooth extraction site if the patient is negligent in using prescribed medications appropriately. To prevent infections at the extraction site, dentists usually prescribe antibiotics after extraction

  • Incomplete tooth extraction. It mostly happens when the dentist finds it right and less risky to leave a small piece of the tooth root inside its socket

  • Accidental damage to the teeth adjacent to the extraction site

  • Jaw fracture commonly occurs to older people with a disease known as osteoporosis. Osteoporosis disease symptoms include loss of bone density and quality

  • Extraction of front teeth may sometimes affect a person’s appearance

  • Teeth alignment problems

  • Shortness of breath and chest pains

  • Excessive bleeding

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Redness and swelling of the tooth extraction site

Other Types of Dentistry Services

Dentistry is a broad profession concerned with the prevention, treatment, and correction of people's dental and oral problems. Apart from tooth extraction, below are other types of dentistry services provided by dentists.

  1. Root Canal

A root canal is a hollow cavity in the tooth that contains blood vessels, nerve tissues, and other cells (pulp). When this part is infected, cleaning it up and removing the infected pulp tissue from the infected tooth is known as the root canal. Before undergoing this procedure, the dentist uses local anesthesia to keep you calm and relaxed.

After injection or swallowing of local anesthesia, the dentist creates small hole access on the tooth enamel to remove infected and dead pulp. After the removal of the dead tissues or infected pulp altogether, the dentist must seal the hole created, and the cavity left. Anti-bacterial fillings are inserted in the hollow cavity in the tooth to prevent future infections, and then the cavity is sealed/capped with a crown for protection.

  1. Pediatric Dentistry

Pediatric dentistry is a practice geared to treatment and taking care of younger patients’ dental health. Every parent's goal is to see their children grow up healthy. Parents must seek a pediatric dentist’s services before and after a baby’s first tooth eruption to ensure proper oral hygiene and dental health of the baby. When it comes to children's dental health care, the measures needed are different compared to adults, both emotionally and medically.

Children will tend to be extra nervous when they visit a dentist compared to adults because it is new. Pediatric dentistry is a line of a profession that requires a person who is compassionate and patient enough to earn a child's trust because children are not young adults. Therefore, before you enroll for any dentist’s services, you must make sure he/she is good with children like the professional and compassionate team of experts at Northridge Dentist.

  1. Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry is a dental practice that helps people to enhance their smiles by improving the aesthetic appearance of the teeth. The process of achieving beautiful smiles through this procedure starts with booking an appointment with a reliable specialist like ones at Northridge Dentist. Besides improved smile appearance, research shows that great and healthy teeth also boosts a person’s self-confidence.

A smile makeover through cosmetic dentistry is what you need if your teeth are discolored, misaligned, chipped, broken, or stained. Cosmetic dentistry involves teeth whitening, dental bonding, dental crowning, dental implants, dental veneering, and other options to enhance teeth aesthetic appearance.

  1. Dental Implants

Dental implants are artificial tooth replacement made to match the natural teeth. They can be fixed permanently or temporarily, depending on the patient’s interests. The purpose of dental implants is to replace a person’s lost teeth and improve their general dental aesthetic appearance. Any dental implants’ success depends on the dentist’s skills and the position where the new dental implant lies in the jaw. Below are the benefits of dental implants:

  1. Use of dental implants improves a person self-esteem

  2. Makes it easy to chew food hence easier eating because dental implants function like original teeth

  3. They promote your comfort because the implants become part of you

  4. They are durable and also some last a lifetime

  5. Contribute to improved oral health because adjacent teeth are not affected.

  6. Dental implants also improve a person’s speech without the worry that a tooth gap might affect your pronunciation of some words

  7. Finally, dental implants play a significant role in improving a person’s dental appearance because they feel and look like natural teeth

  1. Invisalign

Crooked, misaligned, and mispositioned teeth are hard to clean, putting you at risk of tooth decay, which increases your chances of periodontal disease and dental infection. Invisalign is a type of orthodontic treatment practice that involves the use of more comfortable and clear plastic aligners that are fitted over the teeth discreetly and comfortably. Nowadays, most patients prefer the use of Invisalign over traditional orthodontic treatment methods such as braces. You can wear your teeth aligners every day as you wish and remove them while eating, flossing, or brushing.

Invisalign treatment is always a great choice among most patients because its benefits overweigh other orthodontic treatment procedures such as the use of braces that are rough in the mouth. To find a reliable dentist for Invisalign, you must take your time to research potential experts in your area depending on your interests in dental care. Professionals at Northridge Dentist makes this whole process even more comfortable by offering free consultations to our prospective clients and even more convenient payment options.

Find a Tooth Extraction Dentist Near Me

Whether you live in Northridge and want to change your current dentist or are a new resident needing a new dentist, the Northridge Dentist is the go-to clinic. Contact us at 818-875-0216 and schedule an appointment with our compassionate, skilled, and experienced dentists for any dental and oral issue. Our goal is to provide personalized dental treatment to help patients achieve quality life through beautiful smiles.