Tooth Extractions in Beaverton
What is a Tooth Extraction?
As the name implies, tooth extraction is simply the process of removing a tooth, complete with the root. It is often referred to as a “removal” or simply “pulling a tooth”.
When is Removal Recommended?
There are several reasons we might recommend tooth extraction including:
Damage and Tooth DecayIn the case of an accident, severe damage can compromise your dental health. If the damage cannot be corrected with common restoration methods such as fillings or crowns, or damage has also occurred to the root or bone, tooth extraction will be recommended. In some cases, emergency tooth extraction might be required. Decay is different from a damaged tooth, as it occurs slowly and can often be prevented. Decay eats away at your enamel and tooth surface. As it sets in it creates small pits (caries) which eventually become bigger. The longer decay is allowed to progress, the more damage it causes eventually leading to tooth loss. Our first course of action is to see if we can save the tooth with restoration or a root canal. However, if your tooth is too damaged, extraction is required to reduce the risk of serious infection that can spread to other teeth and into your bone.
Tooth extraction is less likely as a treatment for overcrowding since there are more advanced treatment options available. However, it may be used in some cases. Overcrowding is a common issue for many people. When your mouth doesn’t have enough space to accommodate all your teeth, you’ll see overlaps and even gaps in some parts of your mouth. This can lead to issues with proper alignment, bite and future growth as more teeth come in for children. Although it is most commonly detected by the age of seven, some adults can also have issues if they did not have regular dental care as a child.
When teeth are too crowded it can lead to tooth decay as it’s harder to clean between the teeth. We will recommend teeth extractions to reduce overcrowding because it offers many benefits including:
- Improved function in bite
- Improved appearance of your smile
- Allows for better dental hygiene
- Reduced risk for bone health issues
Regular dental checkups are the best way to spot overcrowding and provide a treatment plan to help improve dental health. Your treatment plan will include helping avoid teeth shifting, with special attention given to helping reset teeth. Invisalign clear braces are often an excellent option to address minor shifting issues, while traditional braces are usually required for major shifts.
Gum DiseaseWhen gum disease becomes severe, receding gums and pockets expose your roots. Not only is this painful as the sensitive roots are exposed to air, heat and cold, but it also allows bacteria to cause infections. If an infection reaches your bone structure, your teeth become weak leading to tooth loss. At this point, it is safer for us to perform a tooth extraction, as it reduces the risk for serious infection which can spread.
Wisdom Teeth Removal
If your wisdom teeth are causing pain, are constantly infected, or pose a risk for overcrowding, extraction is often recommended.
It is important you remove wisdom teeth as soon as they start to give you trouble. You may need to get your wisdom teeth removed if you are experiencing:
- Inflamed gums
- Bleeding gums
- Dull jaw pain
- Swelling or tightness of the jaw
- Difficulties opening mouth
Do you think you need to get your wisdom teeth out? Call us to schedule an initial appointment and, after an exam, you will be informed if extraction is recommended, what the removal process looks like, and your procedure options.
*In the case of wisdom teeth removal, we don’t do the procedure in-house, but will make a referral to one of our trusted wisdom teeth specialists.*
Orthodontic TreatmentsWhere palate widening is not possible, sometimes tooth extraction for braces is required before your braces are applied. Another common cause of extractions is that a patient might not be able to afford other forms of restoration. In some cases, extractions are also performed for radiation or chemotherapy patients.
Types of Tooth Extractions and How They Are Performed in BeavertonThere are two types of tooth extractions:
1. Simple Extractions
Simple extractions are used for teeth that are fully exposed from the gums. The area of the tooth is numbed, the tooth is loosened, and the tooth is removed with dental forceps. We use a numbing agent, so you will only feel some wiggling and pressure during the procedure:
- We numb the area and wiggle the tooth then gently pull it out
- In case of infection, we remove affected tissue
- We clean the area and apply gauze to stop bleeding and minimize swelling
2. Surgical Extraction
This is required when teeth haven’t fully broken through the surface of the gum, which is often the case with wisdom teeth. This is more complicated as it requires an incision in the gums to reach the tooth below. In some cases, we might also have to remove some bone surrounding the tooth so it can be safely extracted.
If the case is more complicated, we might recommend sedation for surgical extractions. However, often numbing provides ample comfort for the procedure:
- We make a small cut in the gums to gain access to the tooth
- In some cases, small bits of bone are removed to gain access to the entire tooth
- We remove the tooth, sometimes in pieces if required
- We remove any infected tissue surrounding the site
- We clean it up to remove any fragments and close the space to avoid abscess and swelling which can lead to systemic problems
- We add gauze to control the bleeding and allow a healing blood clot to form
- Swelling is minimized with ice
What is Sectioning a Tooth?When a tooth is firmly anchored, it must be sectioned to remove it. This could be because it is extremely set in its socket or because it has a curved root.
What to expect following your tooth extraction?
Following your extractions you can expect the following:
- Pain and discomfort which should start to decrease within 3 days
- Swelling for a few days
- Minor bleeding lasting for 8 to 24 hours
- Some bruising on the face in the case of surgical extractions
Tooth Removal After-Care
To keep you comfortable we will recommend the use of pain killers following your surgery. You can also follow these after-care tips:
- Bleeding and Clotting: The gauze must be kept in place for a few hours following the procedure as it helps the blood clot that protects your sockets to form. If you find the gauze becomes bloody after several hours you can replace the gauze as required. Avoid rinsing for the first 24 hours to allow the clot to form and begin the healing process. Do not use straws or spit as this can dislodge the blood clot. Do not blow your nose or sneeze if possible as this can also dislodge the developing blood for upper extractions. Elevate your head when sleeping with extra pillows to avoid blood from pooling.
- Discomfort: If you feel discomfort even when using your pain-killers you can also apply cold compresses to your face with 10–20 minutes on and then 10-20 minutes off.
- Cleaning and Brushing: After 24 hours, gently rinse with lukewarm salt water and just let the water drip from your mouth so you don’t spit. Once the swelling subsides you can brush your teeth as you usually do while avoiding the site of the extraction.
- Eating and Drinking: For the first 24 hours choose things like jello, yogurt pudding and apple sauce in hand with plenty of liquids. Once you feel more comfortable you can try other soft foods like mashed potatoes, creamed soups, scrambled eggs, etc.
- Smoking and Alcohol: Ideally you should avoid smoking and alcohol while you are healing. You MUST avoid it at least 24 hours following your extractions.
If prescribed antibiotics, be certain to complete all the medication. We will book a follow-up appointment to make sure everything is going well, and ensure you are healing. However, if you have severe pain, fever, or excess bleeding, contact us immediately.
How Much Does a Tooth Extraction Cost?
Getting a tooth pulled costs is based on the type of the extraction (surgical vs. non-surgical) and the scope of your case. We recommend that you have an x-ray and exam with Dr Zavari to determine the exact cost. We accept most major insurance which usually fully or at least partially covers your treatment. Visit our “Payment Options” page to see if we take your insurance. Unsure? Call us and ask.