There are times when it is necessary to remove a tooth. 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. At other times, a tooth may have so much decay that it puts the surrounding teeth and jaw at risk of decay, so your doctor may recommend removal and replacement with a bridge or implant. Infection, orthodontic correction, or problems with a wisdom tooth can also require removal of a tooth.
When it is determined that 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 root of each tooth is encased within your jawbone in a “tooth socket,” and your tooth is held in that socket by a ligament. In order to extract a tooth, your dentist must expand the socket and separate the tooth from the ligament holding it in place. While this procedure is typically very quick, it is important to share with your doctor any concerns or preferences for sedation.
Once a tooth has been 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.
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery is the surgical specialty that includes the diagnosis, surgical and related treatments of a wide spectrum of diseases, injuries, defects and aesthetic aspects of the mouth, teeth, jaws, face, head and neck.
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons (OMS) are trained to treat patients who experience difficulties with wisdom teeth, facial pain, and misaligned jaws. They often treat accident victims suffering facial injuries requiring dental implant surgery. Also they can care for patients with tumors, cysts, and abnormalities of the jaws/ face and functional and aesthetic conditions of the maxillofacial areas.
The scope of this specialty is extensive and concerns the diagnosis and treatment of diseases affecting the oral (mouth) and maxillofacial (face and neck) regions.