These days our goal is to save teeth and keep them as healthy as possible. Despite this, there are times when tooth removal or extraction becomes necessary. The following are some of the most common reasons we will recommend tooth extraction:
- Severely diseased, neglected teeth which pose a health risk, are painful, and cannot be restored to healthy condition. The most common diseases of teeth are dental caries (cavities) and periodontal disease (gum disease).
- Impacted teeth (teeth stuck below the gum and bone) can lead to a painful condition known as pericoronitis. Pericoronitis is a very common problem seen around impacted wisdom teeth occurring when plaque (bacteria) collects on the crown of a tooth which is under the gum. After a while, the bacteria cause an infection around the crown of the tooth. This infection often leads to swelling and severe pain. Impacted teeth may also lead to crowding and cyst formation.
- Severe crowding problems when orthodontics is anticipated. It is sometimes necessary to create space for tooth realignment by removing teeth.
- Baby teeth (deciduous teeth) must sometimes be removed to assist in the timely development and eruption of permanent teeth. This process is known as serial extractions.
Extractions today can be accomplished painlessly. Modern local anesthetic techniques can completely remove pain from the treatment equation.
In cases where the extraction may be a lengthy or more difficult procedure, an oral or IV sedation may be recommended to relieve anxiety and make the procedure more comfortable for you.
If you have a seriously diseased tooth which requires extraction, do not delay getting treatment as serious health risks like infection may cause pain, swelling and serious illness requiring hospitalization.
Recent research shows that diseased teeth can impact our immune system making us more prone to chronic diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. In particular, a measurable blood component called C-reactive protein has been identified as a marker which can identify active infections. Dental infections can be a contribution to elevations in the marker. Chronic infections like those found around severely diseased teeth, have been shown to be a contributing factor to heart disease, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
What is a surgical extraction?
If your tooth is badly decayed or broken down, it may require a surgical extraction. This term is used when the tooth cannot be removed intact as a whole unit. Surgical extractions are common and can be accomplished safely, quickly, and easily in the hands of an experienced practitioner. During a surgical extraction the gum may be opened and tooth and bone may be cut using the handpiece (drill) to efficiently remove the diseased tooth pieces.