The process for having a tooth pulled

The extraction of a tooth is usually carried out as a last resort, when all the attempts at saving or restoring the tooth have failed. Thanks to advancements in modern dentistry, often even severely damaged teeth can still be saved. However, there are still situations which require a tooth to be pulled out. If that’s your situation and you need an extraction, reach out to us immediately and let us get you scheduled.

Man brushing teeth tooth pain
There are many situations where a tooth cannot be saved and needs to be extracted. It’s important to act quickly if you are experiencing any pain.

Situations which Require Extraction

Pulling a tooth may become necessary in the following situations:

  • Severely Damaged Teeth – An infected tooth needs to be extracted if it cannot be restored (with a root canal, for example).
  • Orthodontic Reasons – Sometimes, there is insufficient space in the jaw to accommodate all your teeth. Or, in order to align your teeth properly, one or two teeth need to be extracted. Often, patients are referred to us by their orthodontist to take care of these types of extractions.
  • Trauma – If a tooth has been badly damaged or fractured because of a trauma, and it cannot be restored, it must be pulled out. This is usually done if it is obvious the tooth and gums will not otherwise heal properly.
  • Pericoronitis – This is a condition where there is frequent inflammation of the soft tissue which surrounds a partially impacted tooth. Mostly commonly, this situation is observed in the third molar teeth. Treatment of pericoronitis involves extraction of the impacted tooth once the inflammation has subsided.

Steps Involved in Pulling a Tooth

Note: We are providing these details for our patients who are curious about these things. But some of these details are not for the squeamish! Also, keep in mind, depending on the specifics of your situation, the details of procedure may differ from what you see here.

  1. Anesthesia – Before starting the procedure, we will numb the tooth and the surrounding tissues by injecting a local anesthetic solution in the region. This injection is quite painless, and you will barely feel any pain during the extraction. While the anesthetic used in the injection kills pain, it cannot take away the sensation of pressure.
  2. Detaching the Gums from the Teeth and Jaw Bone – Teeth are normally firmly rooted in their sockets in the jaw bone and held to it by very short ligaments. Having ensured that the tooth and the surroundings have been numbed, we will detach the fibers that attach the gums and jaw bone to the tooth.
  3. Making the Tooth Loose in its Socket – Next, the tooth is loosened within the socket to make the extraction easy. First, an elevator is applied to the tooth, followed by application of suitable forceps to pull the tooth out. We will grab the tooth firmly and try to rock it sideways. This action results in fracture of the walls of the bone forming the tooth socket, resulting in its widening. Further rocking of the tooth will break the ligaments holding it. When the tooth has become sufficiently loosened, the tooth will be pulled by applying precise and controlled force.
  4. Closing the Surgical Site – After the extraction, we will compress the walls of the socket to position the displaced bone back in place and stop the bleeding. You will be asked to bite on a cotton gauze to control bleeding and to promote clot formation. This clot will then help in bone formation around the surgical site. If required, soft tissues are placed back into position by suturing.

What Happens if a Tooth Fractures During Extraction?

During this process it is quite possible that a part of the crown may break, or root of the tooth may break off and stay in the socket. If this happens, there is no need to worry! We are quite capable of handling these situations, as we handle hundreds of extractions on a routine basis. (It’s very common for dental offices to refer extractions to outside surgical centers, but we handle everything in-office!)

If you need an extraction, it’s important to not delay. Give us a call at 850-495-2999 and we can work you in to our schedule quickly.