Your teeth are incredibly strong. However, while strong, it is still possible for them to be faced with issues such as tooth decay and other types of damage. Damage not only affects the appearance of your teeth, and your smile, but can have a significant impact on your oral health as well. When teeth are damaged, the preferred solution is to save them, keeping them in their sockets. If the damage is too severe, though, saving the teeth may not be possible, and can increase your risk for serious issues. If your teeth are damaged beyond repair, Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center can help with extractions.
Effects of Ignoring Oral Care
Oral care, even routine cleanings, and exams is crucial for maintaining a happy, healthy mouth. Cleanings and exams are designed to help you prevent serious health conditions from occurring. Your exams also allow us to spot issues in their earliest stages, preventing them from progressing into something more serious. In their earliest stages, many oral health issues do not exhibit any symptoms. By the time you start to notice something is wrong, the condition has begun to worsen. The longer oral health issues go untreated, the worse they become. You could soon find yourself faced with complications like painful tooth infections, gum recession, and tooth loss. Some conditions, such as gum disease and tooth infections, can even lead to bacteria entering into the blood stream, where they can spread throughout the body and cause harmful health effects. In addition to affecting your oral and overall health, many conditions can affect the appearance of your smile, which can also lead to self-consciousness.
Effects of Untreated Damage
While minor damage usually only causes aesthetic issues with your teeth, more significant damage can have a much larger effect. Severely damaged teeth can allow bacteria into the inner layers of your teeth, where they can begin attacking the pulp and causing a painful infection. Untreated infections can allow bacteria into your bloodstream, where they can travel throughout your body, causing serious issues including heart disease and diabetes. Severely damaged teeth are at risk for further damage that can significantly impact their structural integrity.
Reasons for a Tooth Extraction
When teeth are damaged, the preferred solution is to save them. However, this is not always possible. When teeth have been significantly damaged, attempting to save them can further compromise your oral health. In these cases, tooth extraction is the best solution. Common reasons a tooth needs to be extracted includes:
- Cracks in your teeth that travel below your gum line. These cracks cannot be protected by a dental crown. These types of cracks include those that start in the crown and travel below the gum line and those that are completely below the gums.
- Teeth that are split completely in half or that are shattered.
- Teeth that are severely decayed.
- Treating overcrowding. Overcrowded teeth not only affect your smile, but they also affect your oral health. Tooth extraction may be needed to create enough space for effective orthodontic treatment.
- Impacted teeth. This is a common issue with wisdom teeth, although other teeth can be impacted as well.
Extracting Your Teeth
When you are faced with tooth damage, it is important that you schedule an appointment right away. We will perform a thorough oral exam to determine the extent of the damage and the best treatment plan. Your exam includes a visual inspection of your teeth as well as dental X-rays, which will allow us to see damage and other issues below the gums. If your teeth require an extraction, we will then create a customized treatment plan.
There are two ways in which teeth can be extracted, simple extractions and surgical extractions. A simple extraction is a fairly straightforward process. After providing you with a local anesthetic, the tooth is gripped and moved back and forth to widen the periodontal ligament. This helps to loosen the tooth. Once the ligament is wide enough, the tooth is lifted free.
Surgical extractions are often used in more complex situations, such as a tooth that is shattered, damaged below the gum line, or impacted. This extraction is done under a local anesthetic and sedation may also be provided. Incisions are made in the gums to expose the root of the affected tooth and the surrounding bone. We then work to completely remove the tooth, which may require removing a small amount of bone or sectioning the tooth to remove in pieces. After the tooth is removed, the area is cleaned, and your gums are sutured closed.
Read More About Extractions
Simple Tooth Extractions
Your teeth perform some essential tasks every single day. They allow you to bite and chew food. They control air, allowing proper, effective speech. They also provide you with a beautiful, confident smile. Taking good care of your mouth is essential for keeping your teeth strong and healthy. Sometimes, however, even with the best oral care, issues arise. Your teeth can become damaged or decayed, issues that not only affect your smile but the health of your mouth as well. In the event of tooth damage, the desired solution is to restore them, allowing them to continue functioning normally. If the damage is too severe though, attempting to save the affected teeth can further compromise your oral health. At Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center, we can treat severely damaged teeth with extractions, including simple extractions.
Why Do Damaged Teeth Need to be Removed?
When your teeth are damaged, treatment is needed right away. Ignoring damaged teeth not only affects the quality of your smile, but it can also affect your oral health, the functions of your teeth, and your quality of life. Damage can compromise the structural integrity of your teeth, which can further harm your teeth. More significant damage can allow bacteria to enter the affected tooth, which can then lead to a serious, painful infection. Infections worsen the longer they go untreated. Bacteria can even enter the bloodstream, contributing to serious health complications such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
Reasons for Extracting Teeth
When your teeth are damaged, we perform a thorough oral exam to assess the extent of the damage and explore all of your treatment options. We visually inspect your teeth and take X-rays. X-rays allow us to see damage below the gum line that we might otherwise miss simply by looking at your mouth. When teeth are damaged, the preferred solution is to save them. However, this is not always possible, and the affected teeth may need to be extracted. Reasons for tooth extractions include:
- Cracks below the gum line. Whether cracks start in the crown and travel below the gum line or are completely below the gums, these teeth cannot be protected with a crown.
- Severe tooth decay. Fillings or crowns are often used to treat decayed teeth. However, if the decay is too severe, a filling can compromise the integrity of the tooth, and there may not be enough natural tooth structure to support a crown.
- Overcrowding. An overcrowded mouth not only affects your smile, but it can affect your oral health as well. Extracting one or more teeth will create enough space for effective orthodontic treatment.
Performing Simple Extractions
One way that teeth can be removed is with a simple extraction. This type of extraction is a fairly straightforward procedure done under a local anesthetic. This ensures that you do not feel any pain while remove the affected tooth. All you will feel is pressure in your mouth. A special tool called an elevator is used to help separate the gums and the periodontal ligament from around the tooth. The tooth is then gripped with forceps to move the tooth back and forth. This helps to further loosen the tooth in its socket. Once the tooth is loose enough, the tooth can then be lifted out. We then place gauze over the socket to help stop bleeding. If necessary, sutures may be placed. Once you have healed, we can then provide you with a replacement tooth.
While the preferred solution is to save damaged teeth, this is not always possible. Sometimes, extractions, followed by tooth replacements, are needed. Call Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center today at (570) 323-1900 to schedule your consultation.
Wisdom Tooth Extractions
Your wisdom teeth also referred to as the third molars, are the very last teeth to erupt. Where most of your adult teeth erupt by around the age of 13, the wisdom teeth come in later, often erupting in your late teens to early 20s. These teeth are also the most likely to cause complications due to being impacted. At Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center, we can help to restore your oral health with wisdom teeth extractions.
Looking Back at the Wisdom Teeth
The wisdom teeth were once very important. Thousands of years ago, before the invention of cooking, they used to be crucial for chewing the coarse foods that made up the human diet. The jaws were also much larger, meaning that there was sufficient space for them to grow in. With cooking, foods were made softer and easier to chew. As a result, the wisdom teeth became obsolete. Even though the human jaw began to grow smaller over time, the wisdom teeth continue to develop.
Causes of Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Your wisdom teeth can become impacted for some reasons, including:
- Insufficient space in the jaw.
- Growths in the bone or soft tissue that prevents proper eruption.
- The wisdom teeth are angled.
What Happens if the Wisdom Teeth are Impacted?
While some adults develop their wisdom teeth without complications, many experiences impacted wisdom teeth. When your wisdom teeth are impacted, you may be faced with several issues, including:
- Overcrowding. If you do not have enough space in your jaw, the erupting wisdom teeth can push your adjacent teeth out of alignment. These teeth push against other teeth, pushing all of your teeth out of alignment. Not only does this affect your smile, but it can also affect your oral health.
- Damage to adjacent teeth. If the teeth are growing in at an angle, they can grow into adjacent teeth, causing serious damage.
- Infections. Partially erupted wisdom teeth are difficult to clean. This can lead to a buildup of bacteria that can cause a localized infection.
- Cysts. A cyst is a fluid-filled sac that often forms as a result of an infection. It can also form as a result of impacted teeth. It continues to grow larger the longer it goes untreated and can damage the jawbone in the process. Too much damage can lead to the need for a bone graft.
Extracting Impacted Wisdom Teeth
The best way to deal with impacted wisdom teeth, restoring the health and functions of your mouth, is to extract them. Typically, wisdom teeth are removed with a surgical extraction. This type of extraction is done under a local anesthetic. Sedation may also be provided. Surgery begins with incisions at the back of the jaw to expose the wisdom teeth, their roots, and the bone surrounding them. We then work to remove the teeth. This may mean removing small amounts of bone blocking them or cutting the teeth into pieces and removing them in smaller sections. Once the teeth have been extracted, the sockets are cleaned, and the gums are sutured closed. Following the extraction of wisdom teeth, there is no need for a tooth replacement. Removing impacted wisdom teeth can significantly help to improve your oral health and your overall quality of life. Unlike other teeth, the wisdom teeth do not need to be replaced following extraction. For more information, and to schedule your appointment, call Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center today at (570) 323-1900.
Effects of Tooth Loss
Your teeth perform many important functions every single day. To ensure the health of your teeth, it is essential that you take proper care of them. Taking care of your teeth, and your mouth, involves regular brushing, flossing, and dental visits. Poor oral hygiene can result in serious oral health complications, including tooth decay and gum disease. Even if you take good care of your mouth, issues like facial trauma can affect your teeth, causing damage like chips and fractures. Gum disease, decay, and severe damage can lead to tooth loss. Whether the teeth fall out on their own or they need to be extracted, tooth loss can have several significant effects on your life. If you have suffered tooth loss, Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center is here to help.
Impact on Your Smile
Your teeth play a critical role in the quality of your smile. One of the most obvious effects of tooth loss is the impact that it has on the quality of your smile, and your confidence. Missing teeth leaves gaps in your smile, which significantly affects your appearance. A smile with gaps in it could impact how others perceive you. Areas of missing teeth could also cause you to become self-conscious, leading you to hide your smile from those around you. While hiding a smile behind your hand might not seem like a significant action, it can relay the message that you lack confidence, and can, therefore, impact the impressions you leave with others.
Difficulties with Eating
Teeth are integral in biting and chewing. They are also important for proper digestion. Losing teeth affects your ability to both of these actions. When you are missing teeth, you might find it difficult, and even impossible, to enjoy many of the foods you once enjoyed with ease. It also becomes more difficult to thoroughly chew your food. Chewing is the first stage of digestion. Your teeth break down the foods you eat so that your body can more easily absorb the nutrients. If you do not thoroughly chew your food, your body cannot access all of the nutrients properly, which can lead to malnutrition.
Trouble with Speech
The teeth are important for controlling airflow when you speak. This allows you to communicate properly and effectively with others. Tooth loss can lead to speech issues such as a lisp. It becomes harder to form certain words and sounds the more teeth you lose. This can lead to communication issues.
The Effects of Tooth Loss on Your Jawbone
There is also a hidden effect of tooth loss. One of the essential, yet often overlooked, roles of your teeth is to provide stimulation for your jawbone. This stimulation tells your body that nutrients are required at the jaw and surrounding areas. When you lose teeth, the bone loses stimulation. The body thinks that fewer nutrients are needed for it begins to send less. This eventually leads to a loss of bone mass in the jaw. The jaw begins to weaken and change shape. This affects the alignment of healthy teeth remaining in the arch. It also impacts the shape of your face. Your facial features loose support, which leads to sagging, sunken skin and the formation of fine lines and wrinkles.
Losing teeth significantly impacts just about every aspect of your life. No matter if you have lost one tooth or several, replacing missing teeth is essential. Call Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center today at (570) 323-1900 for more information and to schedule your appointment.
If your teeth are damaged beyond repair, the best solution may be to extract them and then replace them. For more information, and to schedule your consultation, call Susquehanna Oral and Facial Surgery and Dental Implant Center at (570) 323-1900 today.