Dr. Chetan Patil will try to preserve your natural tooth whenever possible. However, there are some situations where a tooth extraction may be the best solution.
In cases of impaction, overcrowding, or severe dental infection, a tooth extraction can create a healthy, stable foundation for your smile or provide immense, immediate relief.
How can a tooth extraction potentially help you?
In a 2016 study of 52 extraction patients, a large majority responded that they experienced less pain than they had expected.
Tooth extraction may be necessary if your tooth has been compromised due to advanced decay, damage, or infection and cannot be treated using other methods, such as root canal therapy. Extraction is also often performed to accommodate orthodontic treatment or to prepare for dental implants. With over 40 years of experience, Dr. Chetan Patil can provide safe, gentle tooth extractions at our Englewood, NJ, practice to help preserve your oral health. Dr. Patil is dedicated to creating a comfortable environment and overall positive experience for every patient. We also offer sedation options to help you relax throughout treatment.
When Is Tooth Extraction Necessary?
There are typically two types of scenarios in which tooth extraction may be recommended: to maintain your oral health or to prepare for another procedure.
Protecting Your Oral Health
Often, a tooth must be removed to protect your oral health such as when:
- A tooth has become impacted, or fails to erupt from the gums
- There is insufficient room for wisdom teeth to grow in properly
- Advanced gum disease has weakened hard and soft tissues around the tooth
- The tooth has broken off at or below the gum line
- There is a large cavity that cannot be treated with a dental crown or filling
- A tooth becomes extensively damaged or decayed beyond the point of repair through root canal therapy
- Root canal therapy is too high-risk due to an autoimmune disease or other health condition
Preparing for Other Treatments
Patients who wish to receive full dentures supported by dental implants may need one or more damaged teeth extracted prior to their treatment. Additionally, Dr. Patil can provide extractions for patients who are preparing for orthodontic treatment. It is not uncommon for teeth to be removed to create the needed space to achieve proper alignment.
The Extraction Process
Before beginning, you will be provided with an anesthetic to manage discomfort. For patients with anxiety, we also offer intravenous (IV) and nitrous oxide sedation methods to help you relax. In the case of a simple extraction, Dr. Patil will first loosen the tooth by gently rocking it back and forth. He will then use forceps to remove it from the socket.
With over 40 years of experience, Dr. Patil can provide safe, gentle tooth extractions to help preserve your oral health.
If a surgical extraction is required for a broken or impacted tooth, the doctor will need to gain access to the underlying structure by lifting the top layer of gum or bone covering your tooth. Often, the tooth will need to be extracted in several pieces. If extraction is completed as a preparatory procedure, you will typically need to allow the area to heal before undergoing another treatment.
Aftercare & Recovery
However, knowing what to expect during as well as after your treatment can help you enjoy a relatively comfortable and successful recovery. To prepare our patients for their tooth extraction recovery, our team at Periodontal Associates, LLC educates patients on the essential measures to ensure their safety and proper healing.
24 Hours after Tooth Extraction
Immediately following your tooth extraction, your oral surgeon will place a piece of gauze over the surgical site. This should be left in place for approximately 30 minutes. If bleeding persists, you may place another gauze pad over the site and bite down with steady pressure for another 15 minutes. If bleeding still persists, moisten a tea bag, and gently close down on it for an additional 15 minutes. (Tea contains an ingredient called tannic acid, which shrinks blood vessels and capillaries, and effectively slows bleeding.) Any swelling can be addressed with the use of a cold compress, which can be applied to the external jaw in 20-minute increments. To manage discomfort, anti-inflammatory medications can be taken.
During the next several weeks, your body will begin to regenerate the bone that was lost during the extraction.
A blood clot will form in the socket where the tooth was extracted. Do not disrupt this blood clot, as it protects the area during the healing phase. During this time, it is important to abstain from strenuous exercise and heavy lifting, as these activities can cause the heart rate to go up, therefore increasing the chance for bleeding and discomfort. Most patients find they can comfortably return to normal activity on the third day.
For the first couple of days, it is best to consume only soft, nutritious foods. As you become more comfortable chewing, you can introduce more solid foods into your diet when you are ready.
One to Two Weeks after Tooth Extraction
Soft tissue wounds heal much faster than the ones outside the mouth. Therefore, you will notice that a significant amount of healing takes place within the first two weeks. If stitches were placed, they can typically be removed approximately seven to 10 days post-op. Most patients have resumed normal eating habits at this point. Generally, sockets from smaller teeth heal faster than sockets from larger teeth. When smaller teeth are extracted, the gums may close over in as little as two weeks’ time.
Three to Four Weeks after Tooth Extraction
If you had a molar tooth extracted, it may take three or four weeks for the tissue to close over. Once the gum tissue has reconnected, you will probably notice a small divot in the gums. This is because the gums have healed, but the bone has not. During the next several weeks, your body will begin to regenerate the bone that was lost during the extraction. Some patients may feel sharp bone fragments or splinters near the extraction site. This is a normal aspect of healing and should not be a cause for concern. If you experience this issue, it should resolve on its own within a couple of weeks.
Restoring Your Smile
In most cases, it is essential that patients plan restorative treatment following their extraction. This can prevent recession of the jawbone, as well as shifting and loosening of the surrounding teeth. While a traditional restoration such as a dental crown, denture, or dental bridge can partially restore function and aesthetics, it is highly recommended that patients consider adding stability with dental implants. Dr. Patil can place implants and also offers preparatory procedures such as bone grafting.
Periodontal Associates, LLC
At Periodontal Associates, LLC, we want to help our patients get back to living their lives as quickly and safely as possible. Chetan Patil, PhD, DDS, and his team pride themselves on their flexible financing options, extensive continuing education, and personalized care.
To experience this level of care firsthand, request an appointment online or call us at (201) 567-7766.
“Dr. Patil and his staff could not be more professional. They take the time to talk to you and explain what will be done. I am constantly surprised at how little pain is associated with the procedures they perform.” Jack T.