Tooth Extraction and Oral Surgery in West Palm Beach

The very heart of being a dentist to me is being able to help my patients keep their teeth forever. There are times, however, when this is not possible. The top reasons for tooth extraction are:

  • when periodontal disease (bone and gum loss) has progressed too far and the teeth are now loose and are causing infections
  • when there is decay that is now too large to restore with a filling or a crown
  • fractured teeth that cannot be repaired due to size and location of the fracture
  • traumatic accidents
  • impacted wisdom teeth that are causing problems to other teeth and or the periodontal status of your mouth

Many times teeth will be removed with minimal post-operative discomfort. My patients will often respond with “that was incredible” referring to the quickness of the procedure and feeling absolutely no pain when I have performed a tooth extraction. It’s not magic, just a lot of experience!

Bone Grafting

Most of the time when a single tooth or multiple teeth need to be removed, bone grafting will be discussed as a recommendation for preserving the bone. When you have a tooth extraction, there is a space (socket) that remains where the roots sat in the jaw. When a tooth is lost, this hole will shrink as it heals and the bone around it will be less than before. To prevent further loss of bone, a bone graft makes sure this area retains the bone level. This is important for many reasons:

  • if we are replacing the tooth we need to have solid bone in the area for support
  • it is much easier from a time and expense perspective to retain existing bone than to build bone back up once it is lost
  • to prevent the bone from collapsing and creating a defect next to neighboring teeth that would compromise the strength of those teeth
  • to prevent the bone from collapsing and creating a cosmetic defect and making the bone appear “sunk in”

In the event I cannot save a patient’s tooth, there are services that I can provide to help restore the loss tooth

  • a dental implant can replace a single or multiple lost teeth
  • a dental bridge is a series of prosthetic teeth that are anchored together at either side of the missing tooth. If one tooth is missing, it is essentially then three crowns that are connected, with the two teeth on either side of the gap connected to a false tooth in the middle. A bridge is permanently cemented onto your teeth so that is does not come out
  • a removable denture¬†(also called a “partial denture”)

Wisdom Teeth

Contrary to popular belief, wisdom teeth are not automatically recommended to be removed. The only time I will recommend wisdom tooth extraction is if they are:

  • decayed and unable to be restored with a filling
  • impacted in such a way that is damaging nearby teeth
  • impacted and causing infection to the bone and gums
  • causing pain necessitating their removal
  • erupted in a manner that is interfering with the proper harmony of the patient’s bite

You have the option of having the teeth removed in our office under local anesthesia and nitrous oxide sedation and/or anti-anxiety medications, or referral to a trusted oral surgeon.

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