Ask a Dentist

November 5, 2021

Q: What Can I Expect For My Tooth Extraction?

A cartoon tooth being extracted

Are you shaking in your boots at the thought of your upcoming tooth extraction? The procedure can seem daunting and nerve-wracking, but it’s a relatively standard procedure. 

To ease your worries, we’ve put together an FAQ about tooth extractions. If we aren’t able to answer your questions in this Ask A Dentist blog, reach out to either of our Winnipeg Dental Clinics. We want you as comfortable as possible before your next appointment. 

Is Tooth Extraction Necessary?

Every patient’s extraction is unique. In many cases, broken, damaged or decayed teeth can be repaired with a filling, crown or other dental treatment. But what if the damage is too severe to repair? 

Dentists and oral surgeons perform tooth extractions for many reasons. These reasons include:

  • Decay or infection has reached deep into the tooth
  • Trauma or injury to the bone or surrounding tooth
  • There isn’t enough room for all the teeth in your mouth, especially wisdom teeth
  • Baby teeth don't fall out in time for the permanent teeth to come in
  • Preparation for orthodontic treatment (to create room for teeth as they move into place)

What Will My Extraction Be Like?

There are two types of extractions: simple and surgical. Before your tooth is removed, your dentist will take x-ray images of your teeth to prepare for the procedure. Through the x-rays, your dentist will determine the best way to remove your tooth (or teeth).

A simple extraction involves removing a visible tooth. A surgical extraction is more complex and is performed when a tooth has not erupted or has broken off at the gumline.

Before removal, your dentist will numb the area around your tooth with anesthesia. The type of anesthesia used depends on the complexity of the extraction and your comfort. Before visiting your dentist for an extraction, it’s always best to arrange for someone to take you home after the procedure.

How Long Does A Tooth Extraction Take?

If you’re only having one tooth extracted, the entire procedure should only take about 20 to 40 minutes. Additional tooth extraction will probably take another three to 15 minutes, depending on location. And more complex procedures can take 2 to 3 hours.

Does Tooth Extraction Hurt?

During the extraction process, you won’t be experiencing any pain thanks to anesthesia. However, you should expect a certain amount of pain and discomfort after your procedure. Your dentist will recommend painkillers and will likely prescribe one for you, as well as antibiotics to stave off infection.

Applying an ice pack to your face will reduce swelling. Avoid hard, chewy, spicy and/or hot foods and drinks after the extraction. If you’re wondering about how long a tooth extraction takes to heal, find out in our previous Ask A Dentist blog.

At Dental Image Therapy Centres, we can talk to you about different options to replace your tooth after the procedure. If you’re experiencing any pain and discomfort in your mouth, book your next checkup and cleaning today at either of our Winnipeg dental clinics (St. Vital Centre and Garden City Shopping Centre). We’re happy to help with your dental needs.

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Maybe it's time for your and your family's regular checkup and cleaning, you have a toothache or you need to get your treatment plan going - whatever the reason, we're here to help you get your confident smile. Whether you're a new patient or a returning friend, we can't wait to see you at your next appointment at either of our Winnipeg clinics!

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