Have you ever heard the phrase “it’s like pulling teeth”? It is generally used to describe something unfun. And if you think about it, they’re right – having a tooth pulled is no fun. But there are lots of reason a tooth needs to be pulled.
Your dentist may recommend extraction if you tooth is…
- Seriously damaged, either due to injury or decay, and cannot be saved
- A wisdom tooth (third molar), it may cause crowding, alignment problems, pain, or infection
- Blocking another tooth from coming in
- A baby tooth that didn’t fall out in time
- Causing crowding, a dentist or orthodontist may recommend removing some teeth to allow braces to better adjust the remaining teeth
- Infected, or could potentially be an infection source in high risk patients such as those undergoing organ transplants or cancer treatment
Extractions typically fall into one of two classes – simple and surgical. Dentists often perform simple extractions, where oral surgeons often perform surgical extractions. Simple extractions generally involve a single tooth that is visible in the mouth, with clear alignment – after numbing the area with local anesthetic, the tooth will be loosened using an instrument known as an elevator, and then pulled with an instrument known as forceps. For surgical removal, the surgeon may use local anesthetic, moderate sedation, or general anesthesia, and likely use a combination of tools and techniques to remove teeth that may be difficult to see (or still within the gums).
If your dentist recommends an extraction, it’s likely that you have a potentially serious problem. While it’s unlikely you’ll celebrate the news, you need not fear; pulling teeth today isn’t as painful as the saying makes it out to be.
Visit Dr. Kirtley today and schedule an appointment to maintain a healthy smile. Call 317-841-1111 or www.smilesbygeorge.com.
Dr. George Kirtley proudly serves Indianapolis and all surrounding areas.