You might not think a tooth extraction is something to look forward to. But extractions are only recommended when a tooth can’t be saved — and that means that having an extraction can actually be very beneficial for your overall oral health.
At Dr. Taylor’s Family Dental Center, Marvin Taylor, DDS, uses crowns, fillings, and other restorations to save natural teeth when warranted. But there are some very specific circumstances when extractions are the best solution — including the six below.
#1: Substantial tooth decay
Most tooth decay can be successfully treated with fillings or, for deep decay, root canal therapy. But when decay affects most of the tooth material, having the damaged tooth pulled can be the optimal solution for preventing more serious problems.
Extraction can also be a good choice for people who already have very large fillings that have weakened a tooth, or when decay develops underneath an existing large filling.
#2: Deep infection
Infection happens when bacteria invade your tooth or the gums or bone supporting your tooth. These infections can often be treated successfully with antibiotics and deep cleaning treatments. But if the infection is advanced, an extraction may be recommended to prevent the infection from spreading.
#3: Fractured tooth
Not all broken teeth need to be extracted. Some “minor” fractures can be repaired using a crown to cover, strengthen, and protect the remaining tooth. But when a tooth is badly broken or broken below the gum, an extraction typically is the best choice.
#4: Advanced gum disease
Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss among adults, and by the time a tooth falls out on its own, there’s a good chance the root area is already badly infected. Extractions remove teeth damaged by gum disease, so the bone supporting the tooth can be preserved from damaging infection.
After these extractions, Dr. Taylor will work with you to prevent gum disease from spreading and to develop a plan to replace extracted teeth and preserve your bite balance.
Most people have 32 adult teeth, and you’d think our jaws would always have plenty of room to accommodate them. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.
Overcrowding interferes with your bite balance, increases the risk of decay and other problems, and takes a toll on your beautiful smile. Extractions address overcrowding by “freeing up” space, giving your teeth the room they need, and keeping your bite mechanics in check.
Impaction happens when an erupting tooth gets “stuck” under another tooth (a common problem with wisdom teeth). As the trapped tooth tries to emerge from your gums, it puts a lot of pressure on the tooth above it, causing pain and other problems.
Impacted teeth are more likely to have infections, and they can throw off your bite balance, too. Dr. Smith uses special techniques to remove impacted teeth, restoring your bite balance and protecting neighboring teeth.
Once a tooth is pulled, it’s imperative to replace it as soon as possible with a bridge, denture, or dental implant. When a tooth is missing, it leaves a gap, and it doesn’t take long for the neighboring teeth (and their roots) to begin to shift into that extra space.
That shifting can cause a whole new set of issues and even increase your risk of additional tooth loss. Replacing the tooth right away helps avoid those problems. (The exception: If teeth are extracted to address overcrowding, no “replacement tooth” is required.)
The good news: Dr. Taylor uses the most advanced techniques for tooth extractions in patients at his Waterford, Michigan, practice, so the procedure and your recovery can be a lot more comfortable than you probably imagine.
If you have tooth or jaw pain, scheduling an office visit with Dr. Taylor is the best way to find relief — and to prevent decay, infection, or other problems from becoming more serious. To schedule your office visit, call 248-681-8100 or book an appointment online at Dr. Taylor’s Family Dental Center today.