Sometimes dentists pull teeth to prepare the mouth for orthodontia. The goal of orthodontia is to properly align the teeth, which may not be possible if your teeth are too big for your mouth. Likewise, if a tooth cannot break through the gum (erupt) because there is not room in the mouth for it, your dentist may recommend pulling it.
If tooth decay or damage extends to the pulp – the center of the tooth containing nerves and blood vessels – bacteria in the mouth can enter the pulp, leading to infection. Often this can be corrected with root canal therapy, but if the infection is so severe that antibiotics or root canal therapy do not cure it, extraction may be needed to prevent the spread of infection.
If your immune system is compromised (for example, if you are receiving chemotherapy or are having an organ transplant), even the risk of infection in a particular tooth may be reason enough to pull the tooth.
If periodontal disease – an infection of the tissues and bones that surround and support the teeth – have caused loosening of the teeth, it may be necessary to pull the tooth or teeth.
Before pulling the tooth, you will be given an injection of a local anesthetic to numb the area where the tooth will be removed. If the tooth is impacted, Dr. Dogra will cut away gum and bone tissue that cover the tooth and then, using forceps, grasp the tooth and gently rock it back and forth to loosen it from the jaw bone and ligaments that hold it in place.
Sometimes, a hard-to-pull tooth must be removed in pieces. Once the tooth has been pulled, a blood clot usually forms in the socket. We will pack a gauze pad into the socket and have you bite down on it to help stop the bleeding. Sometimes Dr. Dogra will place a few stitches to close the gum edges over the extraction site.