Perhaps, Dr. Jon Erickson at Danville Family Dentistry in Hendricks County has told you that you need to have a tooth extraction. If so, you probably have a lot of questions about what to expect.
During an extraction, your tooth is removed from the socket in the bone – or, in other words, it’s pulled out. Some common reasons for extractions include: severe tooth decay or gum disease, a broken tooth, a baby tooth that hasn’t fallen out, problems with crowded teeth, or an impacted wisdom tooth.
Prior to Your Tooth Extraction
Dr. Erickson will take x-rays of the area around the affected tooth to determine the best way to remove it and to see if any infections or other issues are present. Also, he will need to know your dental and medical history, including a list of all medications (prescription and over-the-counter) that you take.
If you have specific medical conditions or an infection at the time of your surgery, Dr. Erickson may prescribe an antibiotic that you’ll need to take before and after your oral surgery.
Tooth Extraction Procedures
There are two types of tooth extractions performed at the Hendricks County office:
- Simple extraction – If the tooth can be seen in the mouth, a simple extraction is performed. Dr. Erickson will widen the tooth socket with an elevator, a type of dental forceps. He then wiggles the tooth back and forth until it’s loose enough to be removed.
- Surgical extraction – If your tooth is broken, under the gum or difficult to get to, you may need a surgical extraction. Dr. Erickson will make a small incision into your gum. Depending upon your situation, he may need to split the tooth into sections with a drill for removal with forceps, and/or he may need to remove some of the bone around the tooth.
After your tooth is removed, you may need stitches. To help stop any bleeding, a cotton gauze pad will be placed over the wound. Dr. Erickson will let you know whether your stitches will dissolve over time or if they will need to be removed at a follow-up appointment.
During a simple tooth extraction, you may only need a local anesthetic which is injected into the gum near the affected tooth.
During a surgical extraction, you will receive a local anesthetic. You also may need intravenous (IV) anesthesia, which can range from conscious sedation (you’ll be relaxed without being put to sleep) to general anesthesia (you’ll be asleep during the procedure). With IV anesthesia, you’ll need to make sure you don’t eat or drink anything for at least 8 hours before your procedure. And you’ll need to have someone drive you home afterwards and stay with you until the next day.
During either procedure, you may feel some pressure or vibrations if a drill is used – if you’re not asleep. But you shouldn’t feel any pain. If you do, let Dr. Erickson know.
After Your Tooth Extraction
Following your procedure, you may experience mild to moderate pain, depending upon whether it was a simple or surgical extraction. Dr. Erickson will give you post-surgery instructions to follow, which may include the use of painkillers, rinsing your mouth with warm salt water, when to change your gauze pads or the need to eat soft foods as your mouth heals. If you have any questions, make sure to ask Dr. Erickson or his staff.
If you experience any complications, such as prolonged bleeding, severe pain, swelling or a fever, after you return to your Hendricks County home, contact Danville Family Dentistry immediately.