Tooth Extraction and a Healthy Smile

Young woman pointing to her smileWhen it is warranted, Dr. Chris Reger can perform tooth extraction in our San Antonio dental office. Wisdom tooth extraction is actually quite common for patients between the ages of 16 and 19, though it can be performed on older patients. Other times, tooth extraction may be necessary to prepare a mouth for dentures or to alleviate crowding. If you know that you need extractions or want to discuss treatment options, schedule your appointment to meet with Dr. Reger. He will work with you to determine the optimal plan for your oral health.

Why Have a Tooth Pulled?

Dr. Reger’s primary goal is to help you take care of your natural teeth so that they can last a lifetime. However, in some cases, extraction is the most practical treatment option. He may recommend extraction for:

  • Infection: Sometimes, a tooth is too badly damaged to save using root canal therapy or another procedure. In these situations, a tooth may require extraction before infection spreads to other parts of the body.
  • Risk of infection: Many times, a patient’s immune system is crippled by an organ transplant, chemotherapy, heredity, or other conditions. Removal of a slightly damaged tooth may reduce the risk of a future serious illness.
  • Overcrowding: Tooth extraction may be an appropriate orthodontic measure if a new tooth has no room to erupt (grow above the gum line), or if your teeth are simply too big for your mouth.
  • Gum disease: Periodontitis can weaken your gums and jawbone tissue. If these supporting tissues are too weak to support a tooth, extraction may be necessary.
  • Wisdom teeth: Third molars may erupt at an awkward angle, making the back of the mouth difficult to clean. Wisdom teeth may also become impacted, or unable to erupt at all.

Younger patients are usually better candidates for tooth extraction sine they heal faster and develop fewer complications. Often, though, extractions are necessary due to issues that surface as we age. Dr. Reger takes every precaution to foster comfortable extraction and prompt recovery for patients of all ages. Although most extractions can be completed in only one visit, Dr. Reger may need to refer complex extraction cases to a specialist.

The Extraction Procedure

If the tooth is impacted, Dr. Reger will gently remove the surrounding gum tissue and then use a dental instrument to remove the tooth. In some cases, he may need to extract a tooth in pieces. After the tooth is removed, he will apply self-dissolving sutures or gauze to help prevent blood clots. Except in the case of wisdom teeth, following extraction, Dr. Reger usually recommends replacing the missing tooth. A dental implant or bridge can preserve the natural look of your smile and maintain the strength of your jaw bone, reducing your risk for losing additional teeth in the future.

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Whether you need a simple wisdom tooth extraction or a more involved dental procedure, you can rely on Dr. Reger and our staff to provide comfortable care, while making you feel welcome. To learn more about how extraction may be the best option to preserve your oral health, schedule your appointment today.

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