Procedure, Costs, and After-Care: Exploring the Ins and Outs of Tooth Extraction

For some people, few phrases are more terrifying than “tooth extraction.” However, sometimes, all you need to calm the nerves is to learn more about the process. A tooth extraction procedure is one of the most common dental treatments that many of us will experience at some point, whether to treat an infection or fix a damaged tooth. In this blog, we’ll take you through everything you need to know about tooth removal, including the procedure, cost, and after-care routine. Let’s dive in.

What Is Tooth Extraction?

A tooth extraction procedure involves pulling a tooth completely out of its socket. It’s recommended by dental professionals in cases when a tooth is so damaged it cannot be treated or saved. Depending on your case, the dentist may opt for one of two procedures: a simple extraction or a surgical tooth extraction. A simple extraction often involves removing visible teeth and requires little downtime. In contrast, teeth that are severely damaged at the gumline require surgical removal. For example, many wisdom tooth-related complications require tooth removal surgery, while other damaged teeth only need a simple extraction process.
What Is Tooth Extraction

Reasons for Tooth Extraction

There are many reasons you may need a tooth extraction. Some include:
  • Severe tooth decay
  • Overcrowding
  • To prepare for braces
  • Wisdom tooth complications
  • Damaged teeth (due to external impact, accident, etc.)
  • Periodontal disease
  • In some cases, even a potential risk of infection is enough reason to pull a tooth. Those with compromised immune systems may also consider getting even slightly damaged teeth removed as a precautionary measure. Dental professionals will always try to save a tooth before proceeding with extraction. Only once it’s confirmed that the issue can’t be fixed will they resort to extracting the tooth.

    What to Expect from the Tooth Extraction Procedure

    During the consultation phase, you must inform your dentist about any medications you may be on and your medical history. Patients with heart or liver conditions or weak immune systems should inform their dentists well in advance of an extraction procedure. Since there is a risk of infection, patients may have to take a course of antibiotics before and after the procedure. In most cases, your dentist will require you to get a dental X-ray to assess the extent of damage and map out the extraction procedure. On the day, the dentist will give you a local anesthetic to numb the area. You may also be administered a sedative or general anesthesia for more complex procedures. Once you’re under, the dentist will cut away at the gum and bone tissue on the tooth to loosen it from the jaw bone. Then, they can remove teeth with ease. In rare cases, the tooth may have to be broken down into smaller pieces before it is removed. The dentist will then clean the wound. They may ask you to bite down on a piece of gauze to stop the bleeding or place a few self-dissolving stitches (or sutures) over the gum extraction site.
    What to Expect from the Tooth Extraction Procedure

    Broken Tooth Extraction Procedure

    A broken tooth extraction is generally a simple procedure. However, if the tooth is broken at the gumline, the dentist may need to make an incision to remove the pieces.

    Wisdom Tooth Extraction Procedure

    Wisdom tooth extraction takes a little longer. If the tooth is visible, the dentist will be able to pull it out after numbing the area. But if the tooth is at or below the gumline, they will have to make a small cut in the gum or remove the piece of the bone covering the tooth.

    How Long Does A Tooth Extraction Procedure Take?

    A simple tooth extraction takes 20 to 40 minutes, including the time to administer the anesthesia and the actual removal. A surgical procedure may last slightly longer, up to an hour. The exact time depends on factors like how many teeth you need removed, the type of anesthesia, and the severity of the case.

    Aftercare Tips & Potential Risks

    Following surgical removal of tooth, your dentist will recommend some aftercare tips, including regular cleaning and avoiding intense workouts. They may also prescribe antibiotics and painkillers to aid in the recovery process. There is little downtime associated with tooth removal surgery, although many patients skip a day of work or school after the procedure as a precautionary measure. Some good practices to follow include:
  • Apply a cold compress to the area for 10 minutes a day.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Avoid crunchy foods that could potentially irritate the area.
  • Avoid drinking through a straw for the first day after the procedure.
  • Rinse out your mouth with warm water 24 hours after extraction.
  • Prop your head up with a pillow when sleeping.
  • Aftercare Tips & Potential Risks
    Complications following the removal of a tooth are rare. However, certain risks associated with it include:
  • Dry socket - a condition in which the blood clot in the empty socket breaks loose after the extraction
  • Post-surgical infections
  • Bruising and swelling
  • Nerve injury
  • Delayed healing
  • Discomfort or pain at the injection site
  • Notify your dentist immediately in the event of any of these complications. That said, most risks can be avoided by following appropriate after-care, maintaining good oral hygiene, and avoiding smoking.

    Cost of Tooth Extraction

    The cost of tooth extraction depends on many factors, ranging from the specific procedure to the extent of tooth damage or decay. Routine extraction costs around $100 to $200 per tooth, while surgical extraction costs up to $200 to $400. The amount could increase depending on the type of anesthesia you need. The most complicated wisdom tooth extraction procedures could go up to $800 to $4,000. If you live in Los Angeles, contact a dental clinic in Valley Village for a more specific estimate.

    The Bottom Line

    We hope all this information has left you more comfortable and confident about your tooth extraction procedure. Provided you follow all the pre- and post-care tips outlined here, it won’t be long before a dentist restores your natural smile. At Valley Dental Spa, we offer a comprehensive range of dental treatments designed to meet your needs. Our team of experienced professionals carries out teeth extraction processes with exceptional care, ensuring your comfort and well-being at all times. If you’re looking for dental treatments in Valley Village, don’t hesitate to reach out.
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