What is tooth removal?
Simply put, tooth removal or extraction is a dental procedure that involves the complete removal of an infected, damaged or otherwise problematic tooth from the mouth. Your dentist will discuss all the options for treating such a tooth and help you decide whether an extraction is necessary.
Before your appointment
Your dentist will check if there are any relevant medical information that could impact your procedure. For example, if you suffer with any conditions that may place you at risk of infection or you are on any medication, you will need to inform your dentist.
This will ensure no problems occur during the procedure and you are able to make a full recovery.
The tooth removal procedure
The dentist will provide a local anaesthetic which is injected into or around the affected area, and after a few minutes, the area should feel numbed and your dentist will check that you cannot feel anything. After the anaesthetic has taken effect, your dentist will gently widen your tooth socket to help loosen your tooth before it’s removed. You may feel a slight pulling sensation as the tooth is gently removed but the anaesthesia should alleviate the pain. If you are in any discomfort, please inform your dentist immediately and they may administer some more anaesthetic.
It is likely that a small blood clot will form once the tooth is removed and your dentist will counter this using a gauze pad or suture to help the area heal.
More complex cases
If the tooth cannot be seen, has broken off from the gum, has not erupted or is in any way impacted, a surgical removal may be required.
The procedure differs slightly to a simple extraction; your dentist will make a small incision in your gum and will gently remove the tooth. Sometimes the tooth may have to be removed in parts or parts of the bone may be removed to safely and effectively remove the impacted tooth.
This can take a little longer than an simple extraction and a suture will be placed to aid healing.
If your dentist is at all in doubt that they can remove the tooth safely in surgery, they will refer you to the dental department at the hospital.
Tooth extraction aftercare
Your dentist will provide you with an aftercare package and set of instructions.