Tooth Extractions
Dental extractions are performed for a variety of reasons including tooth decay, injury, and advanced periodontal disease. 

Types of Extractions

There are two forms of extraction: simple and surgical extractions.

Simple extractions are performed on teeth that can be seen in the mouth. They are removed due to decay or injury and are usually performed under a local anesthetic.  During this procedure, the doctor will grasp the tooth with forceps and loosen it by moving the forceps back and forth.  The loosened tooth will then easily come out. 

When a surgical extraction is performed, the doctor makes an incision along the gum line to release the gum from the tooth. The tooth is then removed and ridge preservation is performed to maximize bone healing in the extraction site. This maximizes the ability for dental implant placement after healing is completed. Surgical extractions are usually done with local anesthesia, but a general anesthesia is sometimes preferred. 

Reasons for Tooth Extraction

The most common reason for removal of a tooth is severe decay or breakage of a tooth.  Teeth may also be removed because of:
  • severe tooth decay or infection
  • extra teeth blocking other teeth from growing in
  • severe gum disease
  • room needed for orthodontic treatment
  • a tooth that cannot be restored endodontically
  • fractured teeth
  • room needed for a dental prosthesis (e.g. bridge or denture)
  • cosmetic reasons

Regardless of the reasons a tooth must be pulled, extraction is usually reserved only for cases in which no other treatment option will cure the infection or problem.  
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