In most cases, your dentist will do everything possible to repair and restore your natural teeth. Unfortunately, there may be some circumstances when you will need to have a tooth extracted. This means that your dentist will remove your tooth and its underlying root through surgical means. Here are four reasons that you may need a tooth extraction:
1. Your teeth are too badly damaged.
If you have tooth decay, your dentist will typically use a dental drill to remove the decay before filling the cavity with amalgam or composite fillings. If the cavity is too large to be filled this way, a root canal will be performed, and a crown will be placed. Unfortunately, sometimes the tooth decay is too extensive for these methods. If your dentist decides that these treatments are not the best option for you, they may recommend tooth extraction as a last resort.
2. You are planning to get braces.
At your initial consultation for braces, your orthodontist will evaluate your teeth. They will make a plan to straighten your teeth, which may include tooth extraction. Even if your teeth fit comfortably in your mouth now, your orthodontist may need to make extra room for the changes they will make. But don't worry, you will not be left with an unsightly gap in your mouth after your orthodontic treatment is complete.
3. Your teeth are impacted.
This is a concern for patients whose wisdom teeth are beginning to grow in. Your dentist will take yearly x-rays of your teeth as part of your routine dental care, and those x-rays will be able to show them the position of your wisdom teeth. If your wisdom teeth are growing in sideways, they will eventually impact your other teeth. This can lead to breakage and severe pain, so you will need to have those wisdom teeth extracted before they can do any damage to your surrounding teeth.
4. Your teeth are too crowded.
In some cases, there may not be enough room in your mouth to accommodate all your teeth. You may have a particularly small mouth, or your jaw may be shaped in such a way that your teeth won't fit together as they should. If this is true for you, your dentist may recommend tooth extraction. This can prevent your teeth from becoming misaligned over time, which means you will save money on future orthodontic bills.