Whether you’re terrified of going to the dentist or invasive oral surgery procedures don’t phase you, knowing what you’re signing up for is important. Tooth extractions are among the most common surgical procedures in the United States, helping people remove bothersome, damaged, or wayward teeth.
However, it’s not as simple as grabbing your tooth and yanking. We carefully evaluate your teeth and gums and decide between one of two types of tooth extractions to best fit your needs.
Here, our team of dentists at EZ Dental Clinic in Bellevue, Washington, walks you through the basics of simple and surgical extractions, so you can know a little more about what to expect.
It’s right there in the name: Simple extractions are simple procedures we perform without making any incisions. We usually only need to use a local anesthetic to keep you comfortable. With a simple extraction, we can easily grab and carefully loosen your tooth before removing it.
Simple extractions are best when the tooth is still visible above your gum line and in one cohesive piece. We take a few images of your mouth with an X-ray before we start to ensure there are no problems lurking below your gum line that would warrant a surgical extraction.
You can expect to recuperate within a few days following a simple extraction, but you may experience some swelling, soreness, and jaw pain. Cold compresses and over-the-counter pain medication make these side effects easy to manage.
Remember that the extraction site is vulnerable, especially in the first few days. We walk you through basic care instructions, including what to eat, how to brush your teeth, and how to keep the dry socket intact.
If you have any questions about taking care of your mouth following your extraction, you can call our office and talk to one of our expert team members.
Surgical extractions are a bit more involved than simple extractions. Typically, your tooth is still below the surface of your gum because the crown has broken off or hasn’t emerged yet. A surgical extraction may also be appropriate if you’ve sustained a traumatic injury and/or your tooth is severely damaged.
We make a strategically placed incision in your gums during a surgical extraction to access your tooth. Sometimes, we need to break the tooth into pieces before removing it. We may also need to use stronger anesthesia, which means you’ll need to have a trusted friend or family member drive you home and help you rest comfortably.
Since this procedure is more invasive, you should expect more pain as you heal, and it may take a bit longer for you to recover. Expect to nurse the surgical site for a week or so as the soft tissue heals, swelling goes down, and bleeding stops.
As with simple extractions, you can use cold compresses, pain medication, and plenty of rest to give you relief. Be sure to adhere to all post-op care instructions, as well.
Looking for more information about tooth extractions? Contact our team online or over the phone to get your questions answered.