What is a Tooth Extraction?

Tooth extraction is the removal of a tooth from its socket in the bone.

If a tooth has been broken or damaged by decay, your dentist will try to fix it with a filling, crown or other treatment. Sometimes, though, there's too much damage for the tooth to be repaired. In this case, the tooth needs to be extracted. 

There are two types of extractions:

  • A simple extraction is performed on a tooth that can be seen in the mouth. In a simple extraction, Dr. Alzate loosens the tooth with an instrument called an elevator. Then Dr. Alzate uses an instrument called a forceps to remove the tooth.

  • A surgical extraction is a more complex procedure. It is used if a tooth may have broken off at the gum line or has not come into the mouth yet. Doctor makes a small incision (cut) into your gum. Sometimes it's necessary to remove some of the bone around the tooth or to cut the tooth in half in order to extract it.

  • You can put ice packs on your face to reduce swelling. Alternate 20 minute on and 20 minutes off.

  • Eat soft and cool foods for a few days.

  • You should not smoke, use a straw or spit after surgery. These actions can pull the blood clot out of the socket where the tooth was.

Tips to minimize 

discomfort and speed recovery

Information obtained from http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/procedures/tooth-removal/article/tooth-extraction © 2002- 2017 Aetna, Inc. All rights reserved.