Below are the most common situations in which a tooth extraction may become necessary:
- Infection: If a tooth is damaged to the point where bacteria has entered the pulp of the tooth (the part containing nerves and blood vessels), this will lead to infection. In this case, extraction is sometimes needed to prevent the infection from spreadingand especially if the infection has not cleared with antibiotics.
- Compromised immune system: If you are receiving chemotherapy or radiotherapy (focusing on the facial area) and have any other condition that compromises your immune system, the last thing you want is to deal with tooth decay, which could turn dangerous if the infection is left untreated.
- Gum disease: Periodontal disease often causes loosening of the bones and tissue around the teeth, at which point one or several teeth may need to be pulled.
- Crowded teeth: Dentists often pull teeth in preparation for orthodontic treatment, such as using braces to straighten the teeth. Tooth extraction may be recommended when a tooth has no room to break through the gum, as it will likely begin to result in discomfort so making some more space and room is the key.
During a tooth extraction, you will be given local anesthesia to numb the area around the tooth that is to be removed. In some cases, for example if the tooth is impacted or if you need more than one pulled, your dentist may suggest general anesthesia.
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