In dentistry, extractions are considered a last resort, but they are sometimes necessary. In cases of severe tooth decay, an impacted wisdom tooth, overly crowded teeth, or the failure of a baby tooth to fall out when it should, a tooth extraction becomes necessary to preserve the health of the surrounding teeth.
There are two types of tooth extractions. A simple extraction is performed when the tooth is visible above the gum line and the dentist is able to remove it using only forceps. If the problem lies deeper within the gum line, a surgical extraction will be needed. During this procedure, the gum tissue and/or bone will have to be removed in order to access the tooth and extract it. The dentist will first either numb the affected area with a local anesthetic or administer a general anesthetic (if multiple teeth are being removed at once). The tooth will be revealed via an incision made into the gum tissue. It will be gripped and loosened by being pulled back and forth. The dentist may need to break it into smaller pieces before it can be removed from the gums. Sutures may be used to close the area. The most commonly used for this purpose is soluble sutures, which dissolve over time.
You’ll receive after-care instructions following the procedure. These will include how to handle the treated area, foods to eat and avoid, and how to take any prescribed medications.