Thinking that a tooth extraction is in your near future? While it is ideal to save any teeth that are in jeopardy of being lost, sometimes a tooth cannot be saved. When one or more of your teeth are not savable, you will need to have them extracted from your mouth. Once you are missing…
Can a General Dentist Perform a Tooth Extraction?
If you need a tooth extraction, you probably wonder if your regular dentist can perform the extraction or if the procedure will need to be done by an oral surgeon. The answer to this question depends on several factors and should be determined on a case-by-case basis. Read on to understand the different factors that go into you and your dentist or oral surgeon deciding who will perform your tooth extraction.
Simple extraction vs. surgical extraction
The first factor in play is whether the extraction will be a simple extraction or a surgical extraction. A simple extraction is removing a tooth that is fully erupted, meaning that it is fully above the gum line and is visible in your mouth. A surgical extraction is necessary when a tooth has not erupted and is hidden below the gum line in the jawbone or has only partially erupted. This situation is common with wisdom teeth, which are the last set of molars that come in. A general dentist can perform a simple tooth extraction using forceps. For a surgical extraction, however, only an oral surgeon is qualified to perform the extraction procedure.
General dentist vs. an oral surgeon
It should be noted that a general dentist can perform simple tooth extractions. Many people rely on their general dentist to perform this routine procedure, and it is easily accomplished in-office. However, your dentist may refer you to an oral surgeon in some instances. If you have limited jaw mobility, large sinuses, or your teeth are positioned in a way that prevents a general dentist from being able to perform the tooth extraction; then an oral surgeon will need to do the procedure.
Another reason you would need an oral surgeon for your tooth extraction is if the tooth or teeth you are having removed are cracked or broken. Removal of cracked or broken teeth is more complicated than extracting an intact tooth and requires oral anesthesia. Oral surgeons are can also help patients with dental anxiety because oral surgeons are qualified to administer a variety of different types of anesthesia.
When simple tooth extractions aren’t simple
Simple tooth extractions are not always so simple. If, for some reason, you are at risk for complications from simple tooth extraction, your general dentist will guide what you should do next. Some of the complications patients may experience during a simple tooth extraction include cracks or complex tooth root systems.
It’s important to note that every patient is different. The requirements for your procedure will depend on many factors, such as your current tooth health, location of the extraction, and your risk of developing complications. Your dentist can provide more information about whether he or she can perform the extraction in their office.
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