About Tooth Extractions
In cases of severe pain or infection, a tooth that cannot be saved with a root canal may need to be removed in order to treat the infection and end discomfort. Emergency extractions may need to be performed in the case of trauma or injury. Wisdom teeth extractions are usually a planned surgical procedure that is done to prevent further shifting of the teeth. If the tooth is visible above the gum line, a simple extraction may be performed to pull the tooth out. At Houston Heights Dentistry, Dr. Neela Patel will determine if a tooth extraction is required by using digital x-rays and a dental examination. However, extractions should be a procedure of last resort - you should always try to save a natural tooth to preserve bone structure and prevent other teeth from shifting to fill the gap created. If you do choose to extract a tooth, you should fill the gap with an implant (ideally) or a bridge as soon as possible.
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What to Expect
For a simple extraction, a local anesthetic is usually given to numb the gums before Dr. Patel loosens and removes the full tooth from the jawbone. The tooth will be carefully separated from the gum tissue and ligaments before the socket is cleaned and closed. For a surgical extraction, a patient may be given local anesthesia with sedation or IV sedation with an anesthesiologist. To remove the tooth, Dr. Patel must surgically cut through the gums and bone. In some cases, the tooth will be cut into pieces for easier extraction. Once removed, the socket will be cleaned and stitched closed. Bone grafting is a procedure that is recommended after many surgical extractions to provide faster healing, and to better preserve the bone , and lessen the bone loss. With grafting, the bone is better prepared for an implant, and it also promotes the preservation of bone around the surrounding teeth.
After an extraction, a blood clot will form in the socket of the removed tooth, which should be kept clean and watched for signs of infection. Over-the-counter pain medication may be suggested for any discomfort after the procedure or the patient will be prescribed pain medication and possibly an antibiotic. Patients will need to follow a soft food or liquid diet for a few days after the extraction. Patients should be careful brushing their teeth to help the socket heal. The gums and bone usually begin to heal 1 – 2 weeks after the extraction, but it takes to six months before the area is fully healed.
If the extraction is a medical necessity, in-network insurance patients typically see 50% of the cost will usually be covered by dental insurance. The coverage and cost may vary based on whether it is a simple or surgical extraction, so our administrative team will confirm the patient's benefits and out-of-pocket cost. Our office offers financing plans and we accept several payment options.
Plan Your Procedure
Remove and Restore
Whether you need your wisdom teeth removed or you need an emergency extraction due to a severe infection or injury, please contact our office to learn more about your options. Dr. Patel and our team at Houston Heights Dentistry can help you with simple or surgical extractions to improve your overall health.