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When Is a Tooth Extraction Recommended?
When a patient is continually dealing with a severe toothache, getting a tooth extraction may be a solution. However, with the advancements in dentistry, there are chances of saving the tooth instead of removing it. Yet, sometimes a tooth extraction is preferable to dealing with constant pain or allowing an infection to spread further in the mouth and cause more issues.
Recommendations for tooth extraction
The dentist is the best person to recommend extraction following a case of infection, gum disease, damage or impaction. Except in emergencies, removal should only happen after a comprehensive examination and evaluation of the patient’s oral health. Extractions are not always simple. If a tooth gets broken close to the gum line, is impacted or split into pieces, the process may be more complicated than usual.
The following are some of the reasons the dentist might suggest tooth extraction:
1. Severe tooth damage: If a tooth was damaged due to trauma or disease, repairing the damage may not always be possible and a tooth extraction may be the only option.
2. Infection or disease: Severe infection or decay that affects the tooth pulp can necessitate tooth extraction, especially if antibiotics fail to work for the infection. If there is severe gum disease, the tooth root may also be exposed or damaged in which removing it is advisable.
3. Sometimes, especially for patients going through chemotherapy or organ transplant, the risks of infection may indicate the need for a tooth removal. In this case, tooth extraction is simply a preventive measure to prevent serious complications with the immune system.
4. Tooth impaction or overcrowding: The dentist will recommend extracting wisdom teeth that fail to emerge through the gum or if the jaw does not have enough room to accommodate additional teeth. If the jaw is small, crowding will occur and the teeth on the jaw will be merged, overlap or even stop new teeth from erupting. The extraction will be necessary if the teeth erupt at odd angles, get trapped under the gums or overlap, in which biting and chewing can become arduous.
5. Crowding: If the patient is about to undergo a teeth straightening procedure, the dentist may need to remove some teeth to make the process work. Sometimes, one or more teeth are taken out for cosmetic or functional reasons.
Signs that a tooth should be removed
Patients often want to know the signs that point to tooth extraction. Not all wisdom teeth need to be extracted and severe pain is not always solved by removing the problematic tooth. Some of the signs that might suggest the need for the procedure include jaw pain or stiffness, pain that worsens when chewing, gum disease, swollen gums and debilitating tooth pain.
Except for overcrowding, the dentist will not recommend removing a tooth, even if it is damaged, if restoration is still possible. This is often because missing teeth can cause other issues that may affect the patient’s oral health if viable replacements are not provided.
The general dentist will recommend tooth extraction if a tooth is severely damaged, infected or impacted and the chances of saving the tooth successfully are low. If you think a tooth extraction is necessary, consult with the dentist first for an evaluation.
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