What is Tooth Extraction?
While founding dentist Dr. Carmen Leary makes every effort to conserve and maintain your natural teeth, there are instances in which she may need to extract a tooth or teeth. A simple extraction removes a tooth that is visible over the gums, and it's typically done for a tooth that is decayed or damaged beyond repair. A surgical extraction removes a tooth that hasn't erupted over the gumline. Surgical extractions are commonly performed to take out impacted teeth, like wisdom teeth, that won't have enough space to fit in your mouth. Whatever the reason for needing an extraction at Leary Family Dentistry, our staff will treat you with care and compassion. Our Charlotte, NC office offers multiple sedation methods, such as oral conscious sedation and nitrous oxide, so that you can remain comfortable and calm during your procedure. Get in touch with our team to learn more or to schedule an exam with Dr. Leary to boost your oral health.
Do I Need Tooth Extraction?
If your tooth is damaged or broken from decay, Dr. Leary may be able to repair it with a crown, bonding, or filling. However, a tooth may need to be removed to prevent the decay from spreading to the remaining teeth. You may also need a dental extraction to remove teeth that don't fit in your mouth. This involves your third molars, commonly known as wisdom teeth, that grow in around the ages of 17 – 21. In older children, baby teeth that haven't fallen out naturally might need to be extracted so they don't block permanent teeth. If you're getting braces or contemplating Invisalign treatments, you may need a simple extraction to make space for the remaining teeth as they move into their ideal places.
What To Expect With Tooth Extraction
Extractions are done in our office using local anesthesia on the area around the tooth being treated. Other kinds of sedation could be used, depending on the degree of the extraction, to help you stay relaxed. Prior to removal for a simple extraction, Dr. Leary will loosen the tooth with a special device known as an elevator. A surgical extraction involves making incisions in your gums to get to the tooth. If necessary, Dr. Leary may have to break the tooth up into smaller pieces to remove it. After extracting an impacted tooth, she'll suture the incision in the gums. Dr. Leary may prescribe antibiotics to be taken before and after the operation — in case you have a current infection, your immune system is compromised, the procedure is prolonged, or you have other specific medical conditions.
Recovery After Tooth Extraction
Depending on the anesthesia used during your extraction, you might need to have a friend or family member drive you home. As your mouth heals, you should avoid spitting, smoking, and using straws. Most patients choose to eat soft, room-temperature food for the first couple of days following the extraction. Dr. Leary will discuss what to expect as you recover and the best ways to take care of your mouth. Your gums will likely be swollen and tender after the procedure, so Dr. Leary recommends over-the-counter pain medicine and cold compresses for your comfort. Occasionally, Dr. Leary may write you a prescription for pain medication or antibiotics. Besides any proposed follow-up visits, you should schedule visits to Leary Family Dentistry for regular dental exams and cleanings so Dr. Leary can track your oral health.
Tooth Extraction Insurance Coverage
Tooth extraction is usually covered by dental insurance, but your sedation preference may not be completely covered. Before your procedure, we'll contact your insurance provider to determine your policy's anesthesia specifications and estimate your expenses. If you don't have dental insurance, Dr. Leary can talk to you about the many payment methods we accept, along with providing information about low-interest medical financing. If you think you may need a tooth extracted, call Leary Family Dentistry today to schedule a consultation.
Plan Your Procedure
Simple and Surgical Tooth Extraction
If you have a tooth that's damaged or if your mouth doesn't have enough space for a new tooth, then tooth extraction may be necessary at Leary Family Dentistry. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Leary at her office at Charlotte, NC to find out more about simple and surgical tooth extractions. If you have dental anxieties or fears, inquire about the sedation options we offer to help you stay relaxed and calm throughout your procedure.