Do I need a tooth extraction?
When she can, Dr. Jodry prefers to save or fix your tooth with fillings, crowns, or other restorative treatments.
Unfortunately, sometimes, you need a tooth extraction, and there’s no way around it. You may need a tooth extraction if you have:
- Excessive tooth decay
- Crowded teeth
- An infection that has destroyed a large portion of your tooth and/or surrounding bone
- Baby teeth that are blocking your adult teeth from growing in
- Problematic wisdom teeth
- Advanced periodontal disease
Dr. Jodry may also need to perform tooth extractions if you're getting braces, and she needs to make room for your teeth to shift into proper alignment.
What happens during a tooth extraction?
Dr. Jodry performs two main types of tooth extractions, simple extractions, and surgical extractions.
During a simple extraction, Dr. Jodry extracts a visible tooth. To do so, she numbs the tooth and gum tissue with local anesthesia, loosens the tooth with an instrument called an elevator, then pulls your tooth out with dental forceps.
During a surgical extraction, Dr. Jodry removes a tooth that has not yet emerged from under your gum line, or that has broken off at the gum line. After she anesthetizes you, she makes a small incision in your gum line to access the tooth.
During a more complicated surgical extraction, she may have to cut into the bone around your tooth to access it, or she may have to cut the tooth in half in order to get it all out.
Immediately after your extraction, Dr. Jodry instructs you to gently bite down on a square of sterile, dry gauze to limit the bleeding. You need to maintain this pressure for half an hour to 45 minutes after your procedure.
Following a tooth extraction, it's normal for you to experience some pain and soreness. To help you manage the pain, Dr. Jodry may recommend or prescribe pain medication. You can also apply an ice pack to your cheek in 15 to 20-minute intervals (15 minutes on, 15 minutes off).
Typically, your pain disappears anywhere from three days to two weeks after your extraction.
What are the tooth replacement options after an extraction?
Dr. Jodry can replace your extracted tooth or teeth with:
- Dental implant restorations
The replacement that she recommends for you depends on how many teeth she extracted, the health of your gums and bone, and your personal preferences.
How do I keep my mouth healthy after a tooth extraction?
For the first 24 hours after your tooth extraction, make sure to avoid:
- Cleaning your teeth adjacent to the extraction site
- Rinsing your mouth vigorously
- Strenuous activity
- Drinking through a straw
- Hot liquids
Most importantly, you need to keep the extraction site clean while it’s healing, to prevent infection. If you follow these guidelines, your mouth should heal completely within a few weeks.
Note that if you experience fever, bleeding, swelling, or severe pain at the extraction site, you need to call Dr. Jodry.
Tooth extractions are no fun, but Kathryn Jodry, DDS, strives to make them as pain-free and comfortable as possible. If you think you need to get a tooth pulled, call the office or request an appointment online today.