A dental extraction may be required if a tooth has been damaged beyond repair. This may be caused by decay, gum disease or trauma. Wisdom teeth may need extracted if they get infected often or cause decay in the teeth next to it. Some teeth may also need extracted before you get braces to make room in your mouth for your teeth to be straightened.
Your dentist will always try to save a tooth, if possible, but if restoration such as a dental crown or root canal treatment is not an option then the affected tooth will be removed. This prevents pain and infection.
Before beginning the extraction, your dentist applies local anaesthetic into the gum area around the tooth to be removed which, will make sure the whole area of the mouth becomes numb so that you do not feel any pain. Your tooth is then loosened by pushing it downwards and wiggling it from side to side. You will feel a lot of pushing when your tooth is being extracted, but you will not feel any sharp pain. Because of the anaesthetic used you will not really feel what is happening although you may hear small noises.
After a tooth has been extracted there will be some bleeding but your dentist will give you a soft pad to absorb it and will ensure it has stopped before you leave the surgery.
It is advisable not to eat or drink hot drinks after the tooth has been removed as you may burn or bite the inside of your mouth. Always wait until the numbness caused by the anaesthetic has worn off before eating or drinking. Your dentist will also request that you do not smoke or drink alcohol for 24 hours after an extraction as this could make the bleeding start again.
It is important to keep the mouth very clean to prevent infection. Brush your teeth as normal twice a day. Starting the day after your extraction, take hot salt mouth washes. Dissolve a tea spoon of salt in a cup of hot water and gently rinse your mouth with it. Do this three times a day everyday after meals.