When Is a Tooth Extraction NecessaryRichmond, TX
As a pediatric dentist in Richmond, TX, we are regularly asked, "When is a tooth extraction necessary?" This is an understandable question because no one wants to have a tooth pulled unless it is absolutely beneficial. As a general dentist, we are not interested in extracting teeth unnecessarily, either. In fact, if your child damages a tooth, our preferred method of treatment would be to restore it using dental bonding or dental crowns. There are times, however, where we do recommend visiting our dental office located at 7910 West Grand Parkway S, Ste 100 Richmond, TX 77406 for an extraction.
Your child was in an accident.
As an emergency dentist, we treat many patients who have gotten into an accident and need to have immediate dental work completed. In some cases, dental damage is only part of the problem and immediate solutions are necessary. If possible, we will restore the tooth using dental bonding or dental crowns. If the problem is urgent, a tooth extraction may be necessary. If your child does need an emergency dentist, call 832-246-7255 to schedule an appointment.
An infection has spread.
If your child has a bad dental infection, you need to visit our dental office right way. Your child will be able to tell if there is a bad infection, because he or she will experience intense discomfort that will make it difficult to bite down, chew, or even carry on with daily activities. We recommend coming in at the first sign of a toothache so that we can treat the infection before it reaches the point of being severe. However, if you have delayed and are now at the point of no return, your child may need a tooth extraction to get rid of the infection quickly. While not ideal, we can eliminate the source of the problem, prescribe your child antibiotics and then replace the tooth or teeth in the future.
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The cost to restore your child’s tooth is too great.
We accept most insurance plans and can also discuss various payment options with you. However, we also realize that sometimes restorative dental work can be cost prohibitive. This is not an inexpensive teeth whitening procedure. Instead, removing an infection can require a full root canal and restoration afterward. If you are in a situation where you cannot afford a root canal, you may want to consider a tooth extraction first and then replace the tooth later on when you have the funds to do so. This will address the immediate problem, which is to remove the infection.
The Extraction Process
The first question we hear from patients is, "When is a tooth extraction necessary?" The second question is always about the process. At Grand Parkway Pediatric Dental, we understand that our patients are often intimidated by the prospect of needing to have a tooth extracted. This is a process that most people grow up fearing, in part, because of popular movies and television conveying an extraction as something truly horrible. The good news is that we can complete the extraction gently, quickly and while keeping your child comfortable.
If your child’s tooth has grown in straight…
We can typically grasp the tooth, wiggle it and gently but quickly pull it out. This process happens quickly. Afterward, we will clean the area and place gauze to stop the bleeding.
If your child’s tooth is impacted…
This process, however, is far more complicated because an impacted tooth cannot be pulled. Instead, we have to cut open the gum tissue that surrounds the tooth so we can fully access it. In some cases, other bone or tissue has to be cut away to give us full access to the tooth and can pull it out. If necessary, we may need to pull it out one piece at a time. Afterward, we will clean the area, replace the gum flap, place sutures if necessary and treat it with gauze.
The Recovery Process After a Tooth Extraction
At Grand Parkway Pediatric Dental, we warn patients that they will be sore for several days and that they will experience some swelling following the procedure. This is perfectly natural. The swelling can be controlled by taking ibuprofen and placing a cold compress or icepack on your child's face in the area where the tooth was extracted. We encourage our patients to do so for 15 minutes at a time. In preparation for your child's tooth extraction, you should buy plenty of JELL-O, yogurt, applesauce and anything else your child can eat without actually needing to chew. Within a couple of days, your child should be able to add solids back into his or her diet, but will need to be cautious until the area has healed completely.
Schedule an Appointment
To find out if your child needs a tooth extraction, call (832) 246-7255 and schedule an appointment with Grand Parkway Pediatric Dental. We will be happy to answer any questions you have.
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