The goal of most dental procedures is to save teeth. Brushing, flossing, and cleaning helps prevent decay. Procedures like filling cavities are meant to remove decay without damaging the tooth. Root canals are used to remove infected nerves within a tooth, but spare the tooth itself. Dental crowns are a method to strengthen the tooth even after significant parts of the tooth have been removed. However, despite all of these advanced procedures designed to save teeth, some teeth simply cannot be saved. When teeth must be removed, your dentist will recommend a procedure known as a tooth extraction.
The most common reason that an extraction may be necessary is if the tooth is broken, or if the tooth is severely damaged by tooth decay. In some cases, severe periodontal disease may cause the supporting tissue to be unable to sustain the tooth, and may necessitate tooth removal as well. Extra teeth – such as wisdom teeth – may need to be removed to prevent crowding.
When extraction is necessary, there are two typical methods: simple extraction and surgical extraction. Simple extraction is typically used on teeth that are visible and properly aligned – dental forceps are used to grasp and rock the tooth back and forth until it can be pulled from its socket. Surgical extraction is often required for teeth that are not visible, or are not properly aligned. In surgical extraction, a dentist or oral surgeon will make an incision to reach the tooth, and may need to break the tooth into pieces in order to remove it from the mouth.
While dentists almost always prefer to save a tooth rather than extract it, occasionally extraction is necessary. If a dentist recommends extraction for a tooth, be sure to discuss what options are available for replacing the missing tooth – your dentist may recommend an implant or bridge, and be sure to discuss proper care of the area during healing.
For more information about dental extractions and oral health call Dr. Anthony Yamada in Manhattan Beach, CA at 310-567-2595 or visit www.anthonyyamadadds.com.
Dr. Anthony Yamada also proudly accepts patients from Manhattan Beach, Ranchos Palos Verdes, Los Angeles, Redondo Beach, Palos Verdes Estates, Torrance, Playa Del Rey, and surrounding areas.