Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars that usually grow in during the late teens to early 20’s. While these teeth provided additional chewing power for our ancestors, the modern human jaw is often too small to accommodate them.
If your jaw is too small for these extra teeth, they may push your other teeth out of place or the wisdom teeth can even grow sideways and cause a myriad of troubles. Dr. Gabriel can assess the status of your wisdom teeth and determine if you need any extractions.
Serious Tooth Infections
If root canal therapy can’t save your tooth from infection, the tooth must be extracted. Removal prevents the spread of harmful bacteria to your other teeth or to other parts of your body. If the infection spreads to your body, it can make you very sick.
Emergency Tooth Extraction
When a tooth infection goes undetected or untreated for too long, you may experience extreme pain. The infection must be treated immediately, whether by emergency root canal therapy or an extraction. If your tooth is causing immense pain for you, call our office at (724) 935-2100 so we can schedule an immediate appointment for you.
What to Expect for Your Tooth Extraction
Before your procedure begins, Dr. Gabriel will ensure you don’t feel pain during the extraction by administering a local anesthetic. He can also provide several levels of sedation to ease you through the process.
Dr. Gabriel will first loosen your tooth to make it easier to remove, then take the tooth out. After the tooth is extracted, he’ll care for the socket by removing any leftover tissue or bone. Gauze may be placed to help reduce bleeding.
How to Care for Your Mouth After an Extraction
After your extraction, we recommend that you:
- Apply gauze as necessary to help stop the bleeding
- Take medication as prescribed for pain
- Place an ice pack on the outside of your cheek to reduce swelling for 10 minutes at a time
- Rest for the first 24 hours so your body can focus on healing
- Eat a soft diet to prevent complications
- Brush your teeth gently without toothpaste, avoiding the extraction area
- Avoid using a straw
- Avoid smoking or tobacco use
Dr. Gabriel will give you detailed instructions on caring for your extraction site. Proper care is essential for healing and can help you avoid infections and other potential issues. If you have any questions about extraction aftercare, call us at (724) 935-2100.
Tooth Extraction Complications
Proper care helps to reduce your potential for issues after your extraction, but sometimes they do develop. It’s important to learn the signs of these complications so you can seek immediate treatment if they affect you.
Your empty tooth socket is extremely vulnerable to infections because it’s unprotected. Signs of infection after extraction are:
- Bleeding that doesn’t stop
- Pain that doesn’t go away with medication
- Swelling in your face, jaw, or gums
- Discharge or pus
- Trouble opening your mouth
- A fever
If you notice these signs after you’ve had an extraction, it’s vital to seek help. Dr. Gabriel can stop the infection from worsening and help you recover.
Dry socket is one of the most common complications following a tooth extraction. This condition develops when the blood clot in your empty tooth socket becomes dislodged. The clot is vital to the healing of your socket and protects you.
The clot can become dislodged easily within the first few days. That’s why it’s important to avoid brushing the area and keep from using a straw. The symptoms of a dry socket are:
- Severe pain
- The socket looks empty and/or you can see the bone
- Pain can be felt near your eye, ear, neck, or face on the side of the extractions
- Constant bad breath
- An unpleasant taste in your mouth
Dr. Gabriel can provide aid in recovery from a dry socket and relieve your pain. He can also provide additional instructions that can help you recover from this condition.