Nobody wants to lose a tooth, but sometimes it’s necessary. When we recommend a tooth extraction, we recommend it for any of four reasons:
- Your tooth is so decayed it can’t be saved.
- Your tooth has a severe infection.
- Your tooth has been broken by trauma, and is beyond repair.
- You’ve got crowding in your mouth.
With proper oral hygiene, probably the only teeth you’ll ever need extracted are your wisdom teeth. Still, if we do need to pull one of your teeth you can expect a gentle procedure.
Contact Capital Dental Design in Richmond today for an easy extraction, or read on to see some FAQs.
How do I know if I need a tooth extracted?
It’s not a good idea to make guesses. Our job is to diagnose you and to suggest a course of treatment. If you experience pain or sensitivity your first step will be to make an appointment. We may recommend an extraction or another procedure.
Keep in mind you might need to have a tooth extracted even if you don’t experience any symptoms. Crowding, for example, doesn’t always hurt. It simply creates other problems, like making it hard to clean every surface of your teeth, or increasing your risk of gum disease. Sometimes the only way to tell you need a tooth extracted is to have a dentist tell you so after an X-ray and exam.
How painful is a tooth extraction?
We do our best to make sure it doesn’t hurt. We always begin with a local anesthetic, which keeps both your teeth and gums comfortably numb. That should take care of any potential physical pain; the rest of it is in your head, which you can probably erase by bringing some earphones and listening to music.
For the majority of our patients that will be enough. But if the anesthetic doesn’t seem adequate, just let us know. We have other options we can use to help ensure your tooth extraction is pain-free.
Even with the anesthetic you may feel some pressure as the dentist gets to work. Some patients find the sensation a little uncomfortable.
What happens in a recovery from tooth extraction?
After the anesthetic wears off you may experience some discomfort. You can manage it with over-the-counter NSAIDs, like Advil. If you’ve had a surgical extraction requiring us to cut into your gums, bone, or both, then we will prescribe pain pills to help. You can also use hot or cold compresses to reduce swelling.
For a few days we may suggest eating soft foods. We may give you a clinical mouthwash to use, or suggest swishing with warm salt water. For about 24 hours after surgery we suggest that you don’t smoke, use a straw, or spit.
We recommend you take at least one day off work to recover. If that’s not an option for you, perhaps ask your employer for an “easy day.”
How much does tooth extraction cost?
Tooth extractions can cost anywhere from $75 to $600. It depends on the complexity of the extraction. A simple tooth-pulling will cost less than a complex surgical extraction.
Before we begin we’ll always tell you what we intend to do, and discuss costs.
If you have dental insurance you can usually expect the plan to cover anywhere from 70% to 80% of the cost of this medically necessary procedure. The insurance-savvy staff in our front office will also verify your benefits, so you know your true out-of-pocket costs.