Dental Extraction in Stafford, VA
Most people require a dental extraction at some point in their life, so it’s important to stay educated on this dental procedure. Below you’ll find a beginner’s guide to tooth extractions, and what you should know before getting this procedure done on yourself. Be sure to find a dentist or oral surgeon that you can trust to complete this procedure.
What is an Extraction?
A dental extraction is the removal of a tooth or teeth to preserve the oral health of a patient. This is a surgical procedure performed by a dentist or oral surgeon and is typically a relatively simple outpatient procedure. There are many reasons why one might need a dental extraction. These include:
- Tooth rot
- Damaged teeth
- Breakage beyond repair
- Tooth decay
- Gum disease
- Overcrowded teeth
- Impacted teeth
- Wisdom teeth
Types of Dental Extractions
There are two main types of dental extraction, and which is needed depends on the severity of the issue and the position of the tooth being extracted.
Simple Tooth Extraction
Simple extractions are used when the tooth being pulled is visible above the gums. A simple tooth extraction is much easier and straightforward than surgical.
There are no incisions or stitches required for a simple extraction. This procedure only requires a local anesthetic and dental tools called elevators and forceps to remove the tooth.
The recovery from a simple extraction is relatively fast and not exceptionally painful. You may need over the counter pain relievers to alleviate some discomfort, but you should be back to work or school the day after the procedure.
If a tooth has not broken through the gums yet or is impacted, a surgical extraction will be in order. This is most commonly used in removing wisdom teeth, which the majority of young adults need completed.
During a surgical extraction, an incision is made in the connective tissue of the gums which allows the dentist or oral surgeon to see and remove the tooth. Occasionally the bone surrounding the tooth will need to be cut for successful extraction.
This procedure requires more time to prepare, since X-rays will be required to see the teeth being extracted, and costs more. It also requires more healing time since stitches are used.
Tips for Recovering from a Dental Extraction
Whether it was a simple or surgical extraction, there will be a short recovery period. To make this time easier, follow some of these tips.
- Use a cold compress on the cheek near the extraction point to reduce swelling. This should be done a few times a day for 10-15 minutes.
- Leave the gauze placed by the dentist for at least three hours, or until it is soaked through with blood.
- Use prescribed or over the counter medications as needed.
- Avoid drinking out of straws for a few days following the procedure. • Do not smoke during the recovery period.
- Elevate your head while sleeping or lying down to promote proper blood flow. • Avoid the extraction site for a few days while brushing and flossing. • Eat soft foods and be aware of extremely hot or cold temperatures, as the site may be sensitive.
Getting a tooth extraction is a routine dental procedure and is required at least once in most people’s lifetime. There are a number of reasons why one may need a dental extraction, so consult a dentist if you’re dealing with excessive tooth pain or sensitivity, as this may be an indication of a deeper issue.