When a Tooth Can't Be Saved.
There are times when tooth extractions are necessary. Sometimes a baby tooth has misshapen or long roots that prevent it from falling out as it should, and the tooth must be removed to make way for the permanent tooth to erupt. Other times, a tooth may have so much decay that it risks the surrounding teeth and jaw. Either way, your doctor may recommend removal and replacement with a bridge or implant. Infection, orthodontic correction, or problems with a wisdom tooth can also require the removal of a tooth.
When a tooth needs to be removed, your dentist may extract the tooth during a regular checkup or may schedule another visit for this procedure. The roots of teeth are encased within your jawbone in what’s called a “tooth socket.” Your teeth are held in that socket by a ligament. Your dentist must expand the socket and separate the tooth from the ligament holding it in place to extract a tooth. While this procedure is typically very quick, it is important to share any concerns or preferences for sedation with your doctor.
Once a tooth is removed, neighboring teeth may shift, causing problems with chewing or with your jaw joint function. To avoid these complications, your dentist may recommend that you replace the extracted tooth.