Tooth removal (or tooth extraction) involves having one or more teeth completely removed from your mouth. Your dentist will usually remove your tooth, but sometimes a surgeon will carry out the procedure in hospital.
There are several reasons why your tooth or teeth may need to be removed. The most common reasons include:
- tooth decay
- gum disease (periodontal disease)
- a broken tooth that can’t be repaired
- an abscess (a collection of pus) on your gums or around your teeth
- crowded teeth
- impacted wisdom teeth
Your teeth may be removed in a single appointment or over a few sessions. You can have a bridge or dentures (false teeth) to replace the one that is removed, or you may decide not to do this. Your dentist will explain all the options available to you.
If you don’t want to have your tooth taken out, there may be alternative treatments available. This will depend on the problem you have with your tooth or teeth. Painkillers can ease pain and swelling, but these will just relieve your symptoms in the short term. Antibiotics and root canal treatment can help treat an infection. You may be able to have a veneeror crown fitted if you have a damaged tooth. Your dentist will be able to discuss all of your options with you.
As with every procedure, there are some risks associated with tooth removal. We have not included the chance of these happening as they are specific to you and differ for every person. Ask your surgeon to explain how these risks apply to you.
Side-effects are the unwanted but mostly temporary effects you may get after having the procedure. You’re likely to have some discomfort and swelling for a few days afterwards, and your jaw may feel a little stiff. You may have some bleeding for a day or so.
Complications are when problems occur during or after the procedure. Complications of having your tooth removed are listed below.
- Infection. If you feel a burning sensation or you have heavy bleeding, increased swelling or pain, contact your dentist. You may have an infection and need antibiotics.
- Dry socket. This happens when the blood doesn’t clot in your tooth socket, so it doesn’t heal properly. Symptoms include severe pain and you will need further treatment.
Before having your teeth extracted, your dentist will take X-ray and going through a complete examination with you. After that, your dentist will discuss with you again whether it is possible to save the tooth or if there is any other alternatives. It is extremely important for you to understand that, once the tooth is extracted out, there is no way to put it back. Therefore, saving your natural teeth is always our first priority.
After that, a blood test would need to be done. The blood test should have the following necessary indications:
- Blood compositions
- Bleeding/Clotting time
For new patients, HIV and Hep B would need to be requested too.
This blood test is necessary to assess whether if there is a bleeding tendency or any other medical conditions that prevents the person from undergoing the procedure and recovering after extraction. (e.g. bleeding disorder).
For patients who have severe medication conditions such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular issues, we would refer them to a hospital to have extraction done for his/her safety.
Your dentist will inject a local anesthetic into your mouth and check it has taken effect before starting the procedure.
Your dentist will widen your tooth socket and gently rock the tooth side to side until it’s loose enough to pull out. You will feel some pressure in your mouth and hear some noise. You shouldn’t feel any pain.
Most teeth only take a few minutes to remove. Afterwards, your dentist may close your tooth socket with stitches.