Why We Perform Tooth Extractions

ExtractionsTooth extractions are sometimes required when a tooth has become too damaged and is no longer functional. While it is true that your permanent teeth are designed to be permanent, there are a number of conditions that can occur that could lead to the need for tooth extractions. These include:

  • Severe damage
  • An intense infection
  • Overcrowding
  • Disease
  • Not enough room for wisdom teeth

Patients often wonder what could cause the need for a dental tooth extraction, and there are numerous answers to this question. As mentioned earlier, the most common reason for having to remove a tooth by extraction is damage. The next most common reason why people have to have their teeth removed stems from infection.

Tooth extractions are sometimes necessary when a root canal therapy fails to stop an infection or if the infection is exceedingly severe. Sometimes, an infection can penetrate the tooth and get into the root and pulp of the tooth. The pulp is the inner, soft portion of the tooth. In order to clear up this kind of an infection, your dentist will prescribe antibiotics and then perform a root canal. The root canal typically removes the infection by removing the root and the pulp. In some cases, the infection is so severe that it cannot be cured by the root canal and tooth extractions become necessary. Removing the tooth is a sure way to stop the infection and more importantly, stop the infection from spreading to other teeth.

Tooth Extractions Can Prevent Infections from Moving to Other Areas

Preventing an infection from spreading is another reason why we may have to do tooth extractions. If you have a compromised immune system, we want to make sure you are not at risk for a severe spread of any infection. Patients who are undergoing chemotherapy, for example, have a severely compromised immune system, which makes it critical that they do not have an infection. When a tooth is showing signs of becoming infected under these circumstances, we will recommend extractions so as to prevent the infection from occurring.

Extractions have commonly been used when there is overcrowding in the mouth. With advanced orthodontics, we are often able to maneuver the teeth in a way that reduces the need for extractions, but there are times when the mouth is just too crowded and tooth extractions are the only way to make sufficient space. If a tooth cannot come through the gums, also known as erupting, because there is not enough room for it, we may consider tooth extraction as a way to relieve the discomfort and pressure that the tooth is causing. Similarly, if your teeth are too big and there is simply not enough room for all the teeth, we may recommend extractions so the teeth that are left are properly aligned.

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