Feeling a bit uneasy about a scheduled extraction? If you dread oral surgery, you are not alone. The right approach, however, will make the experience pleasant. Your dental anxiety does not have to control you, and learning more about what to expect can help you feel more relaxed.
Patients frequently ask common questions about tooth extractions; the best thing is to talk to your dentist about it. If you have any questions running through your mind, we’re here to answer them all! The following are answers to the most common questions about tooth extractions.
Things To Do Before A Tooth Extraction
You must prepare for oral surgery by doing a few things beforehand. When gearing up for your big day, make sure to follow these steps:
- Pick the best dentist
Selecting the right dental clinic is very important as dental treatments done by specialists decrease the chances of frequently returning to the dentist. Finding a competent dentist may seem challenging, but with careful research, you can find a reliable one.
We recommend checking for states that have the highest number of dentists. Did you know that Texas has the second-highest number of dentists in the U.S.? So if you’re a resident of Nashville or other parts of the southern region, you’re lucky to get affordable tooth extraction in Nashville and the neighboring regions. You can get an appointment with some of the most credible and experienced oral surgery specialists at clinics like OMSNashville. Patients can choose from various options for dental implants to make the process secure and more comfortable.
- Discuss your medical history with your dentist
After you choose an experienced dentist, the next step is to schedule an appointment. It is usually safe to pull a tooth, but it can introduce potentially dangerous bacteria into the bloodstream. There is also a risk of infection in the gum tissue. Your dentist may prescribe some antibiotics before and after the extraction. Be sure to provide a complete medical history to your dentist, including any underlying medical conditions and prescribed medications. Your dentist must know if you suffer from any of the following conditions (the following list is by no means complete):
- Any damaged or manufactured heart valves
- Congenital heart defects
- Compromised immunity
- Hip joint replacement
- Endocarditis due to bacterial infection
- Make sure you read your pre-op instructions carefully.
Be sure to read any instructions your dentist provides you before your surgery. This information will assist you in preparing for your anesthesia. Additionally, it will include any instructions unique to your case.
What To Expect From A Tooth Extraction?
Dentists or oral surgeons extract teeth, and during this process, your dentist will administer a mild anesthetic around your impacted tooth. In some cases, a dentist may require mild general anesthesia.
Your dentist will loosen the impacted tooth by cutting away the surrounding gum and bone tissue. They’ll rock the tooth back and forth with forceps to free it from the jaw bones and ligament holding it in place. It is sometimes necessary to remove a tooth in pieces if it is difficult to pull out.
It is common for a blood clot to form in the socket after the tooth has been pulled. The dentist will pack gauze pads into the socket to stop bleeding and ask you to bite down on them. Occasionally, a few stitches will be placed over the extraction site to heal the gums.
The blood clot in the socket may break loose, exposing the bone. This painful condition is called a dry socket. For a few days after this occurs, your dentist will likely apply sedatives to the socket to shield it from infection.
What Is The Purpose Of Extraction?
There is no one-size-fits-all extraction method. Sometimes, extractions are performed to prevent potential dental problems, usually in the case of a wisdom tooth. You are likely to have one or more of these reasons for having it pulled:
- Teeth damage – Wisdom teeth can damage other teeth due to the pressure they exert on them.
- Problems with the jaw – Wisdom teeth cysts may cause bone tissue deterioration and nerve damage.
- Inflammatory sinuses – Pressure from third molars can cause ongoing sinus congestion and pain.
- Gum inflammation – Some teeth irritate your gums, making them hard to clean and causing gingivitis.
- Tooth decay risk – misaligned teeth can be difficult to clean due to their position in the mouth. As a result, your chances of decay increase.
- Malocclusions – Your teeth may erupt at an angle that isn’t ideal, making it difficult to eat.
- Infection – An advanced cavity can lead to an infected tooth. Occasionally, a root canal can be used to treat this. However, if the tooth is abscessed and has spread to the jaw bone, it might have to be removed.
How Will I Be Sedated Or Anesthetized Before The Extraction?
Pre-extraction anesthesia ensures that you won’t feel any pain during the extraction. Sedation might be a good idea if you are nervous about your dental procedure or have other concerns. If you have a history of dental anxiety, discuss your options with your dentist so they can prescribe the necessary medication before extraction.
How Long Will The Healing Process Take?
The soreness will last a couple of days, and you must be careful with food and drinks. Follow these precautionary steps after your oral surgery:
- Follow the directions on the painkillers.
- Use a gauze pad placed over the wound to control bleeding. The gauze should be changed after three to four hours following the extraction.
- Ice the area for ten minutes at a time to reduce swelling.
- Depending on how you feel, limit activities for the next 1-2 days after the extraction.
- Don’t rinse or spit forcefully after the extraction; you may dislodge the blood clot. Also, avoid using a straw as it can pull on the stitches.
- Rinse with salt water the day after the surgery.
- Avoid smoking; it can slow the healing process.
- Consume soft foods such as soup, mashed potatoes, yogurt, applesauce, milkshakes, and pudding that do not require chewing.
- Make sure your head is propped up with pillows when you sleep to minimize bleeding.
- Take care of your teeth and floss them, but do not brush the extraction site – just rinse it with water.
Is There Anything Else I Need To Do After The Extraction?
Each patient’s treatment plan is unique – the process differs from one to another. Likely, you won’t need to do anything after teeth removal.
A dental implant and restoration may follow the removal of another tooth, or you may undergo orthodontic treatment. Keeping your dental appointments is key to staying healthy!
It is always best to have your tooth removed by a professional, as there are many reasons you might need to do so. If you’re preparing for tooth extraction, our guide will help you make the process a lot easier. Follow the tips mentioned above so you won’t have to worry before or after tooth extraction.