Why Are Tooth Extractions Necessary?
Tooth decay, periodontal disease, dental trauma, or orthodontic needs are among some of the many reasons a tooth extraction may be necessary. Accidents happen, and sometimes teeth can’t be repaired with traditional methods. In this event, your child may need to have the tooth pulled or extracted.
A dental extraction is the removal of teeth from the socket in the alveolar bone. Extractions are performed for a wide variety of reasons, but most commonly to remove teeth that can no longer be restored.
Reasons for Tooth Extractions in Kids
- Tooth Decay: If a cavity is left untreated, tooth decay can occur and cause irreversible damage to a tooth. This may result in a tooth extraction to keep the bacteria from leading to more serious oral health conditions.
- Dental Trauma or Injuries: Every parent knows that accidents can happen. In some cases, an accident, a fall, or even a failed dental restoration can result in tooth extraction being necessary. Based on the severity of the trauma or amount of pain and sensitivity caused, a tooth extraction may be needed, and a space maintainer would recommended until the permanent teeth erupt.
- Gum Disease: If gum disease, or gingivitis, goes untreated, it can result in periodontal disease. Periodontal disease affects both the gum line and jawbone and is a serious oral health condition in children. Tooth extraction may be necessary to ensure healthy smiles for life!
- Impacted Teeth: Impacted teeth, most likely wisdom teeth, can get stuck under the surface or only partially grow in. In these cases, our pediatric dentists in our Charleston offices recommend tooth extraction to decrease the risk of future oral health issues and jaw misalignment. Our Talented and highly trained oral surgeons surgically remove wisdom teeth (third molars) located at our surgery center in hanahan, visit us for more information on wisdom teeth removal at Coastal Family Oral Surgery & Sedation.
- Orthodontic Treatment: In some cases, a dentist or orthodontist may recommend extractions of baby teeth or even permanent teeth to be extracted to prevent overcrowding and allow for permanent teeth to erupt.
About The Procedure
For little mouths, the procedure is simpler and more straightforward than adults. Prior to the procedure, a dentist will do a dental X-ray on your child’s teeth to understand the extent of the damage and determine treatment.
Using local anesthesia, the damaged tooth is removed with small forceps without damaging the socket and the surrounding nerves. Some extractions may also require removing some gum tissue to successfully complete the procedure. Following the extraction, the socket will be stitched up if necessary and covered in sterile gauze. If a baby tooth or molar was extracted prematurely, a space maintainer may be until permanent teeth erupt.
After Procedure Care For Children’s Tooth Extraction
The most effective recommendation is positive pressure to stop bleeding. This can be accomplished by having the child bite tightly on a piece of cotton gauze for 15-30 minutes. If your child is too young to do this, hold the gauze tightly against the extraction site with your finger for the same length of time. Even after long pressure, the extraction site may bleed slightly for several hours and may even stop and start again. Further pressure will usually solve the problem.
Normally, only slight discomfort will be experienced after an extraction. If pain is present, we recommend Tylenol or an appropriate dose of Motrin for your child rather than aspirin. If the pain is severe, call the office for guidance.
Avoid straws and any sucking action on the first day. Crunchy foods (peanuts, pretzels, potato chips, etc.) should be avoided for the first day or two. Warm salt water rinses, three to four times a day, are encouraged to help to heal on the first day after the extraction.
Tooth Extraction FAQ’s
How long is the recovery period?
After tooth extraction, your child should be back to normal quickly. If pain lasts more than a few days, contact our office locations and schedule a follow-up visit.
How to reduce swelling after a tooth extraction procedure?
To reduce swelling following a tooth extraction, simply ice the outside of your child’s jaw with an ice pack.
What can be eaten after a tooth extraction?
During recovery after a tooth extraction, only feed your child soft foods for the first few days and avoid hard, crunchy foods for at least a week. This will allow for the area to heal properly and help your child avoid dry sockets.
Contact Coastal Kids Dental & Braces for information regarding tooth extractions and schedule an appointment at one of our 9 Charleston area locations today!