When Does a Tooth Need to be Extracted?
Your permanent teeth are quite strong and ideally, they should last your entire life. With proper oral hygiene coupled with regular dentist appointments and a little bit of luck, your teeth will remain strong and healthy even as you advance in age. However, it doesn’t always play out like that in real life. Despite being sturdy and hard, teeth are susceptible to damage. If the damage is extreme enough, it can result in tooth loss. So under what conditions does a tooth need to be extracted?
Dentists in St. Petersburg agree that teeth are important and no one should let their oral health get to the point of tooth loss. In fact, Dr. Leeson, a dentist at 4th Street Family Dental, would prefer to save your teeth rather than pull it out. This can only be done if the problem is caught early enough. On top of a consistent oral health routine, you should visit the dentist every six months for a comprehensive exam and dental cleaning. However, if a tooth is too damaged to be restored, extracting it may be the only way to prevent the damage from spreading to the rest of your teeth.
Seeing as the procedure is usually done after most other restorative measures have been ruled out, tooth extractions in St. Petersburg can only be carried out under certain circumstances. Additionally, you will later have to replace the missing tooth with an implant to fully restore bite function, aesthetics, and to prevent additional bone loss.
Extensive Tooth Decay
Your teeth require proper care to stay healthy and strong. This requires daily brushing and flossing coupled with regular dentist visits. If your oral hygiene is poor, plaque and bacteria will build on the surface of your teeth over time, resulting in tooth decay and cavities. If your cosmetic dentist in St. Pete catches the tooth decay in time, it can easily be treated.
If the decay isn’t reversed in time, it will eat through the enamel and the dentin, granting bacteria access to the sensitive pulp underneath. Once the pulp becomes infected, your emergency dentist in St. Petersburg will prescribe a root canal to save the damaged tooth and to prevent the infection from spreading to the other teeth. If the damage is too extensive, pulling out the tooth may be the only viable option.
Also called dental crowding, this happens when there isn’t enough space on the jawbone for permanent teeth to grow in straight. This results in crooked teeth that overlap each other, affecting your bite. Not only does this make it difficult to chew and eat, but it makes it virtually impossible to properly clean and floss. Depending on the size of your jaw and how many teeth you have, the overcrowding can either be mild, moderate, or severe.
Since they are hard to clean, overcrowded teeth can collect plaque and germs. This increases your chances of tooth decay and gum disease. If you are suffering from overcrowded teeth, a dentist in St. Petersburg will have to extract one or more teeth to create room in your jaw. This will be followed up by braces to correct the position of the teeth.
As our baby teeth fall all out, they are replaced by a permanent set designed to last the rest of our lives. However, when the permanent tooth doesn’t properly erupt through the gums, it is considered impacted. This happens when the jawbone doesn’t have enough space to hold the new tooth, and it usually involves the wisdom teeth. Dr. Cody Boals, an emergency dentist in Colorado Springs, says it can also be caused by irregular tooth growth, over-retained baby teeth, having extra teeth, and dental trauma.
An impacted tooth may result in:
- Bad breath and a constant bad smell in your mouth, especially near the impacted tooth.
- A gap in the teeth where the impacted tooth should emerge.
- Tender, red and swollen gums.
- Pain while opening or closing your mouth.
- Persistent headaches that come on suddenly.
If you experience any of these symptoms, you may have an impacted tooth. Contact a St. Pete dentist near you to have the tooth extracted to prevent further damage.
Periodontal or gum disease is caused by continued poor oral hygiene, and it is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. When food debris isn’t removed from the surface of your teeth and gums, plaque and bacteria build up over time, inflaming and irritating the gum tissue. Your gums may bleed if you brush your teeth. If the condition isn’t treated at this stage, it advances to a more severe form of gum disease called periodontitis.
The plaque will spread and grow below the gum line, breaking down the tissue and connective bone that holds the tooth in place. As this progresses, the teeth become looser and looser and they may even fall. You may notice some of the following if you have gingivitis:
- Red, swollen and tender gums.
- Persistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth
- Gums that bleed during and after tooth brushing
- Receding gums
- Looser or shifting teeth
For most emergency dentists in St. Pete, tooth extraction is often the last resort. Taking proper care of your teeth and visiting the dentist every six months will keep major dental issues at bay. However, if you are experiencing any of the conditions described above, do not suffer in silence. Contact 4th Street Family Dental today for a consultation.