Although permanent teeth normally last a lifetime, there are a number of reasons why an adult tooth may need to be extracted including trauma, decay, infection, periodontal disease or overcrowding. In those circumstances, the Stonebridge Ranch Dentistry team can perform safe and comfortable extractions in the office using local anesthetic and conscious sedation.
What to Expect During the Extraction
Once you are brought back to the dental chair, a topical cream will be applied to your gums to begin the numbing process. After a few minutes, the doctor will administer injections of local anesthetic to numb the area of the mouth that will be worked on. Once you are completely numb, we will loosen and remove the tooth. You will feel some pressure as she works in the area, but there will be no pain during the removal.
The most common type of sedation used during an extraction is nitrous oxide, otherwise known as laughing gas. It is a sedating gas that is inhaled through the nose, and it will help you feel more relaxed and comfortable during your extraction. It is our preferred method of sedation because the effects wear off very quickly and most patients are able to drive themselves home after the procedure.
If you are particularly anxious about your procedure, let us know so that we can talk to you about other sedation options including prescription medications that can be taken prior to your visit. The effects of oral sedation last much longer than nitrous oxide, and most patients will need to arrange for a ride home and someone to help take care of them for a few hours.
After Surgery Care
Your mouth will remain numb for several hours after the extraction, and you should avoid eating during that time to prevent accidental damage to your mouth or tongue. Some extractions cause mild pain and swelling, and you may need to use over the counter pain medications for a day or two. To ease the swelling, you can use ice packs or heated compresses. It is usually best to eat only soft foods and avoid using a straw for the first few days to help prevent bleeding at the surgical site. Our staff will give you any other post-operative instructions before you go home.