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Tooth Extraction Specialist

Tooth Extraction is needed in a variety of situations, both urgent and nonurgent. Dr. Oanh Le, D.D.S. offers patients in San Mateo, CA extractions along with many other dental services.

Tooth Extraction Q & A

Why Are Tooth Extractions Needed?

Tooth extractions may be needed for a variety of reasons, but the most common cause of tooth extractions today is severe periodontal disease. When serious periodontal disease is present in a tooth, the affected tooth must be removed to protect the other healthy teeth around it. Another common reason for tooth extractions is trauma, for example, a sports injury. Some people, particularly young people, may need tooth extractions due to a "crowded mouth." This essentially means that there isn't enough space for adult teeth to come in, so some of the baby teeth have to be extracted. While not common, a tooth may sometimes need to be removed if it is too badly broken to be restored.

How Does the Tooth Extraction Work?

The patient will be comfortable before the tooth extraction begins, as the dentist will use a numbing medication in the extraction area. Patients with dental anxiety may also be given a mild sedative to help them fully relax during the tooth extraction if necessary. Dr. Le will use a dental tool called a forceps to surgically remove the tooth, and will then immediately clean the area of any debris. Gauze is then placed over the socket, and the patient will need to bite down firmly to staunch the flow of blood.In the case of a major extraction of a large tooth, several tiny stitches may be placed to keep the gums intact.

What is the Recovery Like After a Tooth Extraction?

Recovery is different for each person, but most people need to allow a couple of days for healing to take place after a tooth extraction. In the case of multiple extractions or more complicated tooth extractions, the recovery may be longer. During recovery, patients can take prescribed medication to alleviate pain. Patients generally need to follow a soft diet for at least a day following a tooth extraction. Dr. Le will give each patient specific instructions regarding recovery after their tooth extraction.