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At 4th Street Dental Studio in Columbus, Ohio, we always strive to save your natural teeth whenever possible. Unfortunately, there are times when getting a tooth extracted is necessary for your oral health. Being nervous about the tooth extraction process is normal. We will do everything we can to make you feel more comfortable. Keep reading to learn what you can expect during a tooth extraction appointment.

Reasons for Pulling a Tooth

People may need a dental extraction for several reasons, including

  • A tooth that is so badly decayed it can’t be fixed.
  • Severe damage or trauma to the tooth so that it cannot be repaired.
  • Risk of infection if your immune system is compromised.
  • A tooth that has been loosened due to gum disease.
  • There is not enough room in your mouth for a tooth to erupt through the gums.
  • Your mouth is overcrowded with teeth and not enough space; some may need to be removed for braces.

Your dentist will tell you exactly what is going on in your mouth and explain why you need a surgical extraction.

What Can I Expect During the Extraction Process?

The extraction process begins with a local anesthetic to numb the area of your mouth where the tooth is. If several teeth are pulled, you may be given general anesthesia from an oral surgeon, so you can sleep through the procedure. Once the area is numb, we pull the tooth out. A gauze pad will be packed into the socket to stop the bleeding. You will be asked to bite down on the gauze. Sometimes, we might put in a few stitches, which will self-dissolve over time. Rarely the blood clot in your socket will break free and expose the bone beneath. This is called a dry socket and can be painful; however, the dentist will treat it, so the blood clot does not form again at the extraction site.

How Long Does a Tooth Extraction Take?

Getting one tooth extracted takes between 5-60 minutes, depending on the case.

Is the Tooth Extraction Process Painful?

Usually, there is no pain. Your mouth will be anesthetized, and you will not be able to feel painful sensations. However, you will be able to feel pressure. You will also be able to hear noises during the extraction process.You may wear headphones and listen to music if you want to drown out the sounds of the extraction process.

How to Prepare for a Tooth Extraction

The best way to prepare for tooth extraction is to familiarize yourself with the process. Ask us questions! We will take the time to answer all your questions and help you feel more comfortable about getting your tooth pulled. Tooth extraction is a relatively quick outpatient procedure. Here are some more ways you can prepare for a surgical procedure:

  • Share your complete medical history with us so we know if there are any conditions that might put you at risk for infection or if you are taking any medications that could interact with the anesthesia we use. If you have had side effects with a particular form of anesthesia, let us know about that, too.
  • Ask the dentist if you should avoid eating before the extraction process to prevent nausea. 
  • Do not smoke, spit, or suck from a straw for 1 48  hours after the extraction.
  • Check your dental insurance policy to see if the extraction is covered.
  • Plan for someone to drive you home after the extraction. Even if you only get local anesthesia, your reflexes can be impaired.
  • Use a moisturizer to keep your lips from drying out, and avoid dark lipstick or heavy perfumes.

Information for After the Extraction

You should expect to eat only soft foods when you get home after the extraction and during the recovery period. Do not drink through a straw or spit out, as this can sometimes cause dry sockets. You may brush and floss your teeth, but avoid brushing the extraction area. You may apply an ice pack to your cheek to reduce the swelling. If your mouth feels sore after the anesthesia wears off, you can take over-the-counter pain medication. Prop your head up with pillows when lying down to discourage the extraction area from bleeding more.

If you notice anything unusual, call your dental clinic right away.

What If I Need an Emergency Extraction?

We can handle emergency extractions. Call us, and we will get you into the office as soon as possible. 

Stress Less at 4th Street Dental Studio

Relaxing before and after your tooth extraction appointment is important. The entire staff at 4th Street Dental Studio in Columbus, Ohio, will do their part in helping you feel safe and comfortable. If you ever have any questions, we will answer them to the best of our ability. 

If you believe you need a tooth pulled, contact us to schedule an appointment. We will examine your teeth and provide you with a personalized dental treatment plan.