In many cases, if you need a tooth extracted, your general dentist can take care of it. However, in some cases, the tooth requires a more surgical removal, so your doctor may recommend an oral surgeon. Check out these three reasons you may need to have your tooth extracted by an oral surgeon.
The Tooth Isn't Fully Erupted
Some teeth don't fully erupt for various reasons. One common reason is that the tooth is not fully developed. This can happen with any tooth, but it is common in supernumerary teeth. The tooth isn't fully developed, so it isn't big enough to erupt. Another reason a tooth may not fully erupt is because it is growing sideways. If a tooth is slanted, the crown of the tooth may not be completely above the gum line. If the slant is severe enough, it may grow into nearby teeth. Any tooth that is not fully erupted is at higher risk for infection and should be removed.
The Tooth Has Shattered
Teeth that have big fillings (including root canal therapy), cracks or cavities are at a higher risk of shattering simply from the pressure of eating. This is because the crack or the seam between the filling and tooth creates a weak spot. This causes pressure to be distributed unevenly, which increases the risk of the tooth shattering. If your tooth has shattered, your general dentist may be able to remove it or even rebuild the tooth. However, if it is shattered at the gum line, you may need to have it extracted by an oral surgeon.
You Suffer From Anxiety
Many patients suffer from anxiety when they visit the dentist. If you do, having a tooth extracted may seem like a nightmare. However, oral surgeons are trained in offering sedation dentistry much stronger than general dentists administer. Most general dentists only offer awake sedation, but oral surgeons have the training and qualification to offer anesthesia, allowing you to sleep though your extraction. If you choose sedation dentistry for your extraction, you'll need someone to drive you home after the appointment.
Getting a tooth extracted is never fun, but it is sometimes required to improve the overall health of your smile. If you have any of these concerns, or if your dentist has told you a tooth must be removed, you should consider asking your dentist about an oral surgeon. For more information, contact an oral surgeon in your area today to request information about tooth extraction.