Tooth extraction involves the removal of damaged, decayed or infected teeth. Healthy teeth may be removed that the mouth does not have space for and in preparation for orthodontic treatment, or to remove teeth that are fully or partially impacted and at risk of causing infection.
Your dentist will apply a topical anaesthetic to numb the surface of your gum, followed by a local anaesthetic injection to numb the tissues around the tooth to be removed. The dentist will generally wait for a short period of time to allow the anaesthetic to take effect before removing your tooth. If the tooth has not broken the gum line an incision may be required. Depending on the type of tooth they may use a variety of instruments. Following extraction a blood clot usually forms within one hour and may take up to one week to heal. Over the following 1-2 months the socket will gradually fill in with gum tissue. Your dentist will refer you to an oral & maxillofacial surgeon if an extraction is outside of their expertise.
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This page was last updated at 3:21PM on September 13, 2016.