While the goal of Dr. Mauck and Dr. Ricci is to keep your natural teeth as healthy as possible, at times, decay, fracture, or other defects may make a tooth non-restorable and thus cannot be saved. In these cases, a tooth extraction may be the only choice to prevent further complications from these conditions.
Reasons for Tooth Extraction
- Decay – At times decay can extend deep into the tooth and under the gums and bone. This leaves little healthy tooth left. If options like a root canal or crown are not possible, this may mean a tooth cannot be saved. In these cases extraction is the only option.
- Trauma or Fracture – While most bumps to the teeth or mouth do not cause teeth to fracture, the impact can be large enough to cause cracks for form in either the crown or root of the tooth. If this does occur and the fracture cannot be repaired or restored, the tooth will need to be removed to prevent bone loss of neighboring teeth and pain.
- Orthodontic Treatment – Sometimes, orthodontist require more space in the jaw to allow for proper alignment with braces due to crowding of the teeth. Premolar teeth and extra, “supernumerary”, teeth are at times removed to allow for proper spacing even though the teeth are otherwise healthy.
- Wisdom Teeth – Impacted wisdom teeth can be causes of damage to neighboring teeth, bone, gums, nerves, or blood vessels. If the wisdom teeth are or will cause these conditions, early removal is the best option.
- Baby Teeth – Baby teeth, or deciduous teeth, are the precursors to adult teeth. If their position or sequence of eruption is not correct, the eruption of the permanent tooth may be affected. If the baby tooth has significant decay this can also affect the formation of the permanent teeth.
After removal of a tooth, replacement is best to prevent loss of function, movement or shifting of neighboring teeth, and continued eruption of the opposing teeth. While there are many options of replacing missing teeth, many factors go into deciding what is going to be best in each situation. Options such as dental implants, bridges, or removable appliances can be both functional and esthetic. Make sure to ask your doctor about all of the options prior to the removal of a given tooth.