It would be wonderful to retain all of our natural teeth for life, but there are times when a tooth may need to be extracted. When necessary, extracting a problem tooth can actually improve oral health by stopping the spread of infection and preventing the problem from getting worse. Here at McLean Dental Car in McLean, VA, our dentists, Dr. Cecilia Gyllenhoff and Dr. Samuel Cappiello, can determine if you need a tooth extracted.
Reasons for Extracting a Tooth
A tooth might need to be extracted for several reasons. For instance, a severely infected tooth that cannot be treated through root canal therapy might need to be extracted. Extracting the tooth helps prevent the infection from spreading to other teeth. Additionally, any discomfort, pain, or sensitivity caused by the infection should be alleviated once the tooth has been removed. Reasons for extracting a tooth include:
- The tooth is severely infected
- The tooth is severely decayed
- The tooth is damaged due to injury
- Impacted wisdom tooth that will not erupt
- Overcrowded teeth that do not have sufficient space
- Deciduous teeth (baby teeth) that have not fallen out on their own in a timely manner
If you have an impacted wisdom tooth, a damaged tooth, overcrowded teeth, or any of the other issues listed above, those are signs you may need a tooth extracted. If you have any of these signs, the dentists at our office in McLean, VA, can tell you if extraction is needed.
Tooth Extraction Procedure
Having a tooth extracted can sound a bit daunting to some patients, but the procedure is not necessarily complicated. Once the dentist determines your tooth needs to be removed, x-rays will be taken of the tooth’s root and the surrounding bone.
Prior to beginning the procedure, a local anesthesia is applied to numb the problem tooth and any surrounding areas. If needed, additional sedatives can be administered for more complicated extraction procedures or to help calm uneasy patients. Other sedatives could include nitrous oxide, oral sedatives, or ones that are administered intravenously. During extraction, the tooth is carefully removed and measures are taken to protect the surrounding bone to avoid damage.
Once the tooth has been removed, the area is stitched closed. Depending on how many teeth are being extracted, and whether there are any complications, the procedure can take up to a few hours. Following the procedure, it can take between one and two weeks for the extraction site to completely heal.
Interested? Give Us a Call
There are several signs you may need a tooth extracted, such as a severe infection or overcrowding. The dentists at our office in McLean, VA, can determine if your tooth should be removed. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Gyllenhoff or Dr. Cappiello, call McLean Dental Care at (703) 734-0100.