Our teeth emerge from our gums naturally at certain stages of our young lives, often between the ages of six months and two years. The process of breaking through the gum tissue and becoming visible is called “eruption.” These “baby teeth” are the primary teeth found in the mouth until the eruption of permanent teeth begins, usually around age six.
Natural eruption of teeth can cause pain and discomfort, but is a short-lived process that usually goes without a hitch.
Surgically Assisted Tooth Eruption
Instances of partially-erupted or intruded teeth can cause infections and result in repeated trauma to the overlying tissue. Dr. McVaney here at Specialty Dental Care can, through surgical assistance, often help the eruption process occur without the need for extraction.
Tooth “extraction,” however, refers to the removal of teeth from their sockets in the jawbone, and is usually performed by a periodontist or oral surgeon.
Tooth extraction is a very common procedure in the United States. In fact, according to the Oral Health Foundation, approximately 74% of American adults have needed a tooth extraction at one point or another.
This high number of tooth extractions displays the multitude of reasons there are to undergo the surgery.
Reasons for Tooth Extraction
One of the most commonly-seen reasons for extractions is irreparable damage to a tooth (or teeth) that deems them “hopeless.” This is most often caused by decay, trauma, or gum disease, and can make it difficult for general dentists to repair with a crown or a filling.
Other reasons can be found in the early stages of a tooth’s life. If baby teeth fail to fall out in time for permanent tooth eruption, discomfort and other problems can arise. Additionally, some people are born with “extra” teeth that hinder the proper growth and eruption of the other teeth around them. This is especially important if space needs to be made for the movement of teeth caused by braces.
Medications and disease treatments can also spur the need for tooth extraction, as certain procedures can have damaging effects on the immune system, gums, and teeth. This can greatly increase the risk for infection..
Wisdom Tooth Extraction
The four permanent teeth found in the back of your mouth, both on top and bottom, are referred to as “wisdom teeth” or “third molars.” Wisdom tooth eruption doesn’t commonly occur until the late teens and early 20s, and is known to cause problems that may eventually require extraction.
Wisdom teeth have a tendency to become “impacted” or stuck in the jaw. This can cause discomfort, swelling, and even infection. Long-term effects include damage to other teeth and serious complications with future treatments.
Types of Tooth Extraction
There are two main types of tooth extraction: simple and surgical. A simple extraction is used when the tooth is visible in the mouth, and can be removed by your periodontist, usually with the use of a local anesthetic.
A surgical extraction is required if the teeth have not yet erupted or if they have broken off at the gum line. The process and anesthetic levels of a surgical extraction vary greatly dependent upon your dental situation and periodontist.
Your Omaha, NE Option for Experienced Tooth Extraction
At Specialty Dental Care, we treat each procedure with seriousness and skill, tooth extractions included. Please call us with any questions you might have, or to set up a tooth extraction appointment.
Here is our FAQ on Eruption and Tooth Extraction
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