In the Know: Tooth Extractions

Two top reasons for tooth extractions are damaged or decayed teeth. If teeth are not properly aligned, or if a tooth cannot pass through the gums, it will have to be removed. Other reasons for tooth extractions include severe pain caused by an impacted tooth, infected teeth or gums, gum disease, and tooth overcrowding. Dr. Sarah Cook is an experienced dentist who offers tooth extractions for patients in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Tooth Extraction Chapel Hill, NC

What to Expect

The tooth extraction procedure does not take long. A general anesthetic is used to numb the area where the tooth needs to be removed. Anesthesia helps prevent pain. If you have an impacted tooth, the gum and bone tissue that covers the tooth will need to be cut.

Sometimes, forceps will be used to loosen the tooth for extraction. A blood clot forms in the socket where the tooth has been pulled and the bleeding socket is padded with gauze. Depending on the size of the wound, you may need stitches to the socket to close the gum edges over the extraction site.

Before undergoing a tooth extraction you should inform Dr. Cook of your medical history. Ongoing health issues can lead to further health risks. Inform the dentists of all prescribed medications and/or supplements. The health issues that may put you further risk include:

  • Heart disease
  • Liver disease
  • Impaired immune system
  • HIV or AIDS
  • Artificial Joints

Tooth Extraction Aftercare

You will experience some discomfort after the extraction. It may take a few days for you to recover. Dr. Cook will provide you with aftercare instructions and prescribe painkillers to minimize your pain. Your rate of recovery depends on you following these tips:

  • Avoid rinsing or spitting for 24 hours after the extraction
  • After 24 hours, rinse your mouth with salt and warm water solution
  • Change gauze pads before they become soaked with blood
  • Do not drink from a straw for 24 hours
  • Do not smoke
  • Eat soft foods only
  • Apply ice to the affected area to help keep down the swelling.
  • Brush and floss your teeth but be sure to avoid the extraction area

Schedule an Appointment

The team at Tarheel Family Dentistry is committed to helping patients achieve and maintain good oral hygiene and health. Don’t wait until you are in severe pain to schedule a visit. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.