“I had a root canal done years ago by an oral surgeon with infections still in the tooth. So of course, the numbing did not take place and that was a horrific experience. I've been very frightened to go to the dentist ever since then and I dreaded the Novocain. I was all prepped for my first injection at Dr. Poupore's office and I'm waiting for this huge pain and there was just a little pick and that was it. I was numbed up and I was very relaxed.”
Having a tooth pulled is nerve-wracking for most people, but in some cases, it can be the best choice for treating a serious issue, preventing future problems and maintaining optimal oral health. Wisdom tooth extractions are perhaps among the most common extractions, but teeth may also be pulled when they become too badly damaged to be restored, such as when a tooth is very badly decayed, fractured or broken off below the gum line. Teeth can also be pulled to avoid overcrowding or if they’re impacted or “stuck” under neighboring teeth. In most cases, extractions for damaged teeth are only performed when other options like restorations are not a good option.
That depends on the location of the tooth and the reason for the extraction. Simple extractions are performed using special tools to lift or elevate the tooth from the socket without the need for incisions into the gum tissue. But more complex extractions including wisdom tooth extractions typically require incisions into the gum to make it easier to access the entire tooth root, and in some cases, a small amount of bone may also need to be removed during the procedure. Complex extractions are performed using sedation to prevent discomfort and enable the patient to doze throughout the procedure.
In nearly all cases, the answer is yes. Because they’re the last teeth to erupt, wisdom teeth often come in sideways or become impacted under neighboring teeth. In these cases, they can pose an immediate threat to other teeth, and they need to be extracted to preserve those teeth and to prevent additional problems from developing. But even when a wisdom tooth comes in straight, its location way back in the jaw makes it an ideal harbor for decay-and disease-causing bacteria, and having it extracted is usually recommended in order to prevent cavities, gum disease and even tooth loss from occurring in the future.
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