At Ashby Park Pediatric Dentistry, our dentists are in the business of preserving your smile! Sometimes, a tooth becomes badly damaged by tooth decay or a dental injury and has to be removed or extracted.
A tooth extraction is simply the removal of a tooth from the socket. Our dentists will only perform an extraction if it is necessary, which is most often because the tooth cannot be restored back to optimal chewing function. The most common reason for a tooth extraction is an infection under the tooth, also known as an abscess. Other reasons for needing a tooth extraction may be tooth decay, dental trauma, periodontal disease, or for orthodontic treatment needs.
Even though baby teeth will fall out on their own, it is important to take care of an abscessed tooth or damaged tooth before it causes problems to other baby teeth or permanent teeth that have not yet surfaced. A damaged or decayed tooth may also cause pain and discomfort for a child, leading to difficulty eating or even speaking. In this case, do not ignore your child’s complaints and schedule an appointment at our office in Greenville, Anderson, or Easley, SC and one of our dentists will bring your child’s smile back to optimal health!
About the Procedure
Most of the time, an extraction procedure can simply be done right in the dentist office. Your child’s dentist will use a topical numbing cream and a local anesthetic to numb the extraction site. Your dentist will use an instrument to loosen and lift the tooth out of the socket then use forceps to remove it. The dentist will ensure your child is comfortable and pain-free during the procedure, all while bringing their smile back to its best state.
After Procedure Care for Children’s Tooth Extractions
Following the extraction procedure, your main focus is to help stop the bleeding. Our dentists recommend positive pressure as the most effective method to stop the bleeding. Have your child bite down tightly on a piece of gauze for approximately 15 to 30 minutes. If your child is too young to apply the appropriate pressure themselves, hold down a piece of gauze to the extraction site with your finger for the same amount of time. You will still see some bleeding even after the positive pressure, but do not be alarmed, the extraction site may bleed for several hours or even start and stop again. Continue the positive pressure to help stop the bleeding.
Your child will be numb following the procedure, so help them refrain from eating to keep them from biting their lip, cheek, or tongue. If your child is experiencing any pain, children’s ibuprofen or acetaminophen will help ease the pain or any discomfort. If your child’s pain does not subside or is severe, please contact our office as soon as possible for guidance.
Remember to help them avoid straws or any kind of sucking action on the first day to make sure the extraction site clots. Any kind of crunchy foods should also be avoided. To aid the healing process, rinse the mouth with warm salt water 3 to 4 times a day on the first day following the extraction.
FAQs about Tooth Extractions
How Long is the Recovery Period?
For a simple extraction, your child should only feel pain for 24 hours following the procedure. The extraction site will be tender for a few days, so have your child avoid crunchy or hard foods to help the area heal. Should your child’s pain become severe or extend beyond 24 hours, please contact our office.
How to Reduce Swelling After a Tooth Extraction Procedure?
To reduce swelling after a tooth extraction procedure, simply hold a cold compress to the outside of the extraction site. Additionally, your child can take children’s ibuprofen to help with the pain and swelling following the procedure.
What Can be Eaten After a Tooth Extraction Procedure?
Soft, lukewarm foods are great for a post-extraction meal! Foods such as pudding, mashed vegetables, lukewarm soup, or smoothies are good options to help your child stay fueled. Have them avoid eating crunchy foods or drinking from a straw to help the extraction fully heal.