This six-part article series answers questions about four dental procedures that carry a reputation for being the most traumatic and painful: tooth extractions, root canals, orthodontic braces and dental implants.
“I’ve taken a look at the X-rays and unfortunately the decay is too far advanced for us to be able to save the tooth. It needs to come out.”
Is there anything more terrifying than hearing these words being said by the dentist in Colorado Springs CO? Oh wait, there is! When they actually start prepping the TOOLS necessary to get the job done! Having a tooth pulled does not exactly fall within the definition of the word ‘fun.’ You’ve seen the horror movies: there’s lots of blood, there’s lots of screaming and there’s generally a sadistic dentist involved.
Okay… are you ready for the reality of the situation? Pulling teeth is one of the simplest and most straight-forward of all the dental procedures offered by the dentist in Colorado Springs CO. And it’s really nothing to be scared of!
Dentist in Colorado Springs CO: Your FAQs About Tooth Extractions
FAQ: Why do teeth need to be pulled sometimes?
Answer: It is the primary goal of any dentist in Colorado Springs CO to do what it takes to help a patient keep their full set of original adult teeth. The very best and most sophisticated dental technology available is your own! Not even modern dental implants can rival the functionality and aesthetics of your natural pearly whites. So it is only when a tooth has become irreparably damaged or decayed that the dentist in Colorado Springs CO will recommend its extraction. This can happen for any number of reasons, most of which fall under bacterial infection or decay, and severe physical trauma.
FAQ: Why do wisdom teeth so frequently need to be extracted?
The Dentist in Colorado Springs CO Answers: Wisdom teeth also tend to be problematic, especially around early adulthood when they emerge from their encasing in the jaw bone and push through the overlying soft tissue. Wisdom teeth can become impacted (trapped under the neighboring molars) and they can cause infection of the gums, as well as the development of terribly painful abscesses. They can even cause over-crowding of the dental arch, explains the dentist in Colorado Springs CO. Humans’ wisdom teeth are an evolutionary remnant from a time when our jaws were bigger and more robust (because of our tougher, more fibrous diets.) Nowadays, our jaws are too small - consequently, wisdom teeth frequently need to be removed before they have a chance to cause problems for patients, says the dentist in Colorado Springs CO.
FAQ: What is involved in a tooth extraction?
Answer: First and foremost, the dentist in Colorado Springs CO will inject a local anesthetic into the gum surrounding the problematic tooth. If, however, the procedure is more complex and involves the extraction of, for example, impacted wisdom teeth, a general anesthetic may be used. Once the gum has been completely numbed, or you are ‘asleep’, the dentist in Colorado Springs CO will extract the tooth by gently, but firmly pushing it to the one side and then the other. This action compresses the jaw bone, which causes the tooth socket to enlarge, thus making it easier for the dentist in Colorado Springs to whip the tooth out. In straight-forward cases, this generally takes no more than a few seconds to a minute. In more complex cases requiring surgery, for wisdom teeth removal for example, it can take anywhere between 20 minutes to an hour.
FAQ: What can I expect after the procedure?
The Dentist in Colorado Springs CO Answers: Teeth extractions shouldn’t be terribly painful at the time of the procedure, but once the anesthetic wears off, you may experience a dull throb or ache at the site of the removed tooth. Post-operative swelling and mild bleeding are also totally normal, explains the dentist in Colorado Springs CO. Thankfully, this rarely lasts for more than a few days.
- You will be prescribed pain-killers by the dentist in Colorado Springs CO; take them to keep on top of the pain.
- 24 hours after the procedure, gently gargle with warm salt water several times daily. This will help with the swelling and also minimize your risk of infection.
- Take a few days off from rigorous exercise and activity, advises the dentist in Colorado Springs CO. You could risk hurting yourself and encourage further bleeding.
- Do NOT smoke. Smoking prolongs healing and the inflammation caused by this habit won’t do your oral health any favors, says the dentist in Colorado Springs CO.
- In order to allow your wounds the chance to heal quickly, you should avoid eating any hard, crunchy or textured foods for a few days. Stick to soft, processed foods, such as pudding, soup, smoothies and gelatin, says the dentist in Colorado Springs CO.
- Just because your mouth is sore, doesn’t mean you have a legitimate reason to be lazy about looking after your teeth, warns the dentist in Colorado Springs CO. Continue to brush your teeth very gently, even in the first few days following surgery. Gargle with an anti-bacterial mouthwash (without alcohol) and floss! Good oral hygiene will also help prevent infection.
Dentist in Colorado Springs CO: Stay Tuned!
To read more about the second of the ferocious four - orthodontic braces - stay tuned for the third installment of this six-part article series, courtesy of the dentist in Colorado Springs CO.