Why would I need a tooth extraction?
During a tooth extraction, the dentist will surgically remove a tooth that has become a health issue. It may have been damaged, be crowding other teeth in the mouth, or have erupted improperly. Any of these will cause pain and discomfort, leaving extraction as your best bet.
The procedure is sometimes known as “pulling teeth”. There’s no reason to fear a tooth extraction.
What are some myths about having a tooth pulled?
Here are some myths about the procedure that we often hear from concerned patients:
1. Having a tooth pulled is painful.
One of the most common misconceptions about tooth extraction that we hear is that you will feel pain during this procedure. This is no longer the case since anesthesia and dental technologies are used to help minimize pain during the procedure.
2. Tooth extraction is a go-to dental procedure.
This is also untrue. At Mount Pearl Dental, we try to avoid extracting teeth in favour of preventive, more non-invasive treatment methods, since extraction can sometimes result in dental issues (such as misalignment) or needing more treatments such as tooth replacements in the future.
Unless the tooth is seriously infected, decayed or fractured without hope for repair, alternatives like root canals will often be recommended to save the tooth.
However, there are still some instances where tooth extraction can't be avoided. A couple of ways to help reduce your chances of needing a tooth extraction include practicing excellent oral hygiene and wearing a mouthguard during high-impact sports and physical activities.
3. It will take a long time to recover.
Though you may envision needing to cancel commitments and move your schedule around for some time, this isn’t the case. In most cases, you should recover from the surgery within 3 to 4 days and be able to return to work or school.
Some patients, however, may take up to one week to recover if the extraction was a complex one. While the total healing of the extraction site may take between 2 and 4 weeks, your mouth should be functional again within a few days. To assist in your recovery, stick to liquids and soft foods, avoid smoking, and wait on any strenuous physical activity that may dislodge the blood clot that is integral to your extraction site's healing.
Ask your dentist about other after-care instructions that help to promote healing, reduce pain and prevent the tooth socket from becoming infected.
4. Everyone needs their wisdom teeth pulled.
While you may hear a lot about people who are between the ages of 17 and 25 who need to have their wisdom teeth extracted, there are instances where a dentist won't recommend the procedure. In some cases, wisdom teeth may emerge without causing possible harm or damage to your other teeth.
To find out whether you need your wisdom teeth removed, schedule an appointment with our Mount Pearl dentists.