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Posted on: December 3, 2021
What to Expect During a Tooth Extraction
If your dentist has informed you that a tooth extraction may be necessary to remove one or more of your teeth, you may be nervous or worried about the procedure. In most cases, extractions can be performed in your dentist’s office in Sarasota with minimal pain or discomfort during the procedure. Your dentist will work with you to make sure you understand all aspects of the procedure, including what type of anesthesia will be required, the type of extraction you need and the reasons for removing rather than trying to save the tooth. Your dentist will provide you with the practical information you need to prepare for your extraction appointment in advance.
What to Do Before Your Appointment
Before your extraction, your dentist will ask you for a complete list of your current medical conditions and the medications you regularly take. It is especially important to provide your dentist with information if you have any of the following conditions:
- Issues with your immune system
- Cirrhosis of the liver
- Artificial joints
- Damage to your heart valves or replacement heart valves
- Congenital heart problems
- A history of bacterial endocarditis
Your dentist will also need to know about all the medications you take and whether they are over-the-counter or prescription. If you drink, smoke, or use drugs, you should let your dentist know before your extraction. Even mild over-the-counter medicines can potentially have a serious effect on your reaction to anesthesia or oral surgery.
The Pre-extraction Dental Process
During the diagnostic stage of your treatment, your dentist will typically order X-rays to determine the extent of decay or damage. This will determine whether or not your tooth can be saved or should be removed. If your tooth is no longer viable, your dentist will discuss the various options for removal with you. These generally include the following types of procedures:
- Simple extractions, which may be recommended in cases where a good portion of the tooth is still visible above the gumline
- Oral surgeries, which require an incision into the gums to remove roots and to perform extractions on severely decayed or damaged teeth
- Wisdom tooth removal, which may require special treatment to reduce pain and to ensure that all roots are removed during these extractions
During the time leading up to your procedure, your dentist will also discuss the types of sedation and anesthesia that will be available to you. This can help you to feel more confident about your upcoming extraction and can ensure that you feel as little pain as possible during the procedure.
What Happens During a Tooth Extraction?
Depending on what you and your dentist agree on for sedation, you may receive injections of local anesthetic or may be sedated using IV medication or nitrous oxide. Your dentist will take your wishes and your anxiety about the procedure into consideration when determining which type of sedation is best suited to your needs.
During your extraction with your dentist in Sarasota, you will typically experience some degree of pressure if you are awake for the procedure. If you feel pain, however, it is important to alert your dentist to your situation as soon as possible during the procedure. You may need more local anesthesia or other pain-relieving treatments to ensure that your procedure is as painless as possible.
Your dentist will typically provide you with gauze to bite down on for three hours or more after the extraction is complete. This will allow a clot to form and will speed the healing process. If you are planning to replace the missing tooth with a bridge or an implant, your dentist may offer some specific recommendations that will assist you during recovery from your extraction procedure.
How to Care for Your Mouth After an Extraction
While every case is different, your dental office in Sarasota will typically provide you with some general guidelines that will help you manage the recovery process more effectively. Some of the most helpful tips include the following:
- Keep your head elevated when sleeping after an extraction. This can reduce the amount of bleeding you experience during the healing process.
- Eat only soft foods for a few days following your procedure. Avoiding drinking from a straw or rinsing your mouth vigorously can also protect your extraction site from damage caused by these activities.
- Be careful to avoid brushing the extraction area directly. Doing so could potentially result in dislodging the clot and causing injury to the site of your extraction.
- Applying an ice pack can reduce swelling and inflammation that can otherwise cause pain or discomfort.
Once a full day has passed, you can begin rinsing with a salt-water mixture that combines eight ounces of water with one-half teaspoon of salt. Your dentist will let you know if you need to delay or avoid this step.
Be sure to contact your dentist right away if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Severe pain or excessive swelling in the area of the extraction
- Bleeding that persists after four hours
- Fever or chills
- Vomiting or nausea
- Chest pains or difficulty in breathing
These could be signs of an infection or other medical issue. By contacting your dentist as soon as possible after you notice any of these symptoms, you can avoid serious complications that could affect your dental and medical health. This can help you to manage your dental issues more effectively after an extraction in your local dentist’s office.
Working with a qualified general dentist in Sarasota can help you to manage your dental health more effectively and will allow you to enjoy healthy teeth for many years into the future. If you need a tooth removed, your dentist will be your best source of information and services related to this procedure and will provide you with the best guidance on caring for your teeth to ensure a lifetime of healthier and brighter smiles.