My Blog

Posts for tag: tooth extractions

November 25, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth extractions  

Maintaining good oral health by brushing and flossing daily, as well as visiting the dentist regularly, can help you avoid tooth loss and keep your teeth for life. However, there are situations in which tooth extraction is needed to prevent more serious oral health problems. Dr. Colin Smith, the experienced dentist at Lake Oswego Smiles in Lake Oswego, OR, can determine if tooth extractions are needed in your case.

When Extraction is Needed

There can be many reasons why a tooth must be pulled out. For example, a severely infected tooth that cannot be saved through root canal therapy should be extracted. Pulling out the tooth helps prevent the infection from spreading to other areas of the mouth. Additionally, extracting the tooth alleviates any pain and sensitivity caused by the infection. Tooth extraction is needed in the following situations:

  • A tooth is severely infected, damaged, or decayed
  • The teeth are overcrowded and do not have enough space
  • The wisdom teeth are impacted and will not fully erupt
  • Baby or deciduous teeth have not fallen out on their own

Tooth Extraction Procedure

The procedure for performing tooth extractions at our office in Lake Oswego is fairly straightforward in most cases. X-ray images are taken prior to extracting a tooth. The images enable the dentist to examine the positioning of the tooth’s root, as well as the bone tissue surrounding the root. If the root is in an unusual position, adjustments can be made to help the extraction procedure go as smoothly as possible. For instance, the tooth might need to be pulled out of an angle.

Local anesthesia is administered to numb the mouth in advance. Oral sedatives or nitrous oxide might also be used to help patients relax and remain as comfortable as possible throughout the extraction process. Different factors can affect the method used to extract the tooth. A simple extraction involves using tools to lift and loosen the tooth so it can be pulled out. A surgical extraction is used for more challenging situations, such as an impacted tooth, and can involve breaking the tooth before pulling it out.

During the procedure, various steps are taken to protect the bone tissue surrounding the tooth root so it is not damaged. If necessary, bone-grafting material can be placed in the tooth socket following the extraction to help preserve bone tissue, which can diminish when teeth are missing. Once the tooth has been successfully extracted, the area can be stitched closed. In most cases, the gums heal completely within one to two weeks.

Even though we’d like to keep our natural teeth for life, there are times when extracting a problem tooth can improve oral health.

Schedule a consultation with Dr. Smith to learn more about tooth extractions by calling Lake Oswego Smiles in Lake Oswego, OR, at (503) 635-3653.

By Lake Oswego Smiles
February 10, 2020
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: tooth extractions  

Dentists around the world routinely remove diseased or damaged teeth every day. While some extractions require surgery, many don't: Your family dentist can perform these simple extractions, usually with little complication.

The term simple doesn't necessarily mean easy—as we'll note in a moment, it takes a deft and experienced hand to perform this type of extraction. The term in this case refers more to the type and condition of the tooth: The tooth roots are relatively straight and reside in the bone at an accessible angle. There are otherwise no meaningful impediments to removing it straight out.

The idea of “pulling a tooth” out of the jaw isn't the most accurate way to describe the procedure. A tooth is actually held in place within its bony socket by the periodontal ligament, a tough, elastic tissue between the tooth root and the bone that attaches to both through tiny fibrous extensions. The best method is to first loosen the tooth from the ligament's tiny attachments, for which experienced dentists can develop a certain feel. Once released from the ligament, the tooth will usually come free easily from its socket.

Not all teeth, though, can be removed in this manner. Teeth with multiple roots like back molars, and without a straight trajectory out of the socket, can have a complicated removal. Other dental conditions could also prove problematic for simple extraction, such as brittle roots that might fragment during removal.

For these and other complications, your general dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon for the tooth extraction. But even with the surgical component, these more complicated extractions are relatively minor and routine—millions of wisdom teeth, for example, are removed every year in this manner.

If you have a tooth that needs to be removed due to disease or injury, your dentist will first determine the best way to remove it and will refer you, if necessary, for surgical extraction. And whatever kind of extraction you undergo, the dentist performing it will make sure you remain pain-free during the procedure.

While tooth preservation is usually the best course for long-term dental health, it's sometimes best to remove a tooth. If that should happen, your dentist will make sure it's done with as little discomfort to you as possible.

If you would like more information on dental extraction methods, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Simple Tooth Extraction?