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Over the years, dental medicine has evolved to the point that many teeth that would have needed to be extracted in the past can now be saved. However, there are occasions in which extraction is necessary. An extraction may be needed to relieve tooth overcrowding, to make room for orthodontics, address wisdom tooth issues, or to remove a tooth that has been damaged beyond repair by trauma or disease.

A non-surgical extraction is called a simple extraction. The dentist uses a tool called an elevator to loosen the tooth before removing it with a pair of forceps. If necessary, the dentist may close the socket with a single stitch before scheduling you for a follow-up appointment.

After your tooth has been removed , a blood clot will form over the bottom of the socket. That clot will protect the exposed nerve and jawbone. If that clot is ruptured or removed, you will become vulnerable to infection, and likely in extreme pain.

To avoid dry socket, you should eat cool. Soft foods and chew on the side of your mouth opposite the extraction site for the first 24 hours. You can brush your other teeth if you want, but you should rinse the extraction site with a saltwater solution or an antibacterial rinse. Smoking will slow your healing process and smoking or using a straw will create suction in your mouth, which will put the clot at risk. If you do rupture or remove the clot, you should contact the dentist right away. The dentist can clean the socket and apply a dressing to protect the socket and allow it to heal.

If a tooth has been giving you trouble, our dentist, Dr. Larry Leonakis will be happy to help. If you live in the Carson City, Nevada, area, you can call phone to make an appointment at G. Larry Leonakis DDS Inc..