Our permanent teeth were meant to last a lifetime, however there are multiple reasons we may need to have them extracted. Most common reasons to have a tooth removed is because it is too badly damaged from trauma or decay to be repaired. Other reasons are crowding, infection, risk of infection and periodontal (gum) disease to name a few. Once a tooth/teeth has been removed the first 48 hours are critical to the healing process.
Wisdom teeth refer to the final set of molars that we get in our late teens or early twenties. These teeth can be a valuable asset to the mouth when healthy and properly aligned however, more often than not they are misaligned and require removal. When wisdom teeth are misaligned they can position themselves horizontally, be angled inward or outward, or impacted meaning they are enclosed within the soft tissue and/ or the jawbone or only partially break through the gum. Poor alignment of wisdom teeth can crowd or damage adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or nerves. Partial eruption of the wisdom teeth allows an opening for bacteria to enter around the tooth and cause an infection, which results in pain, swelling, jaw stiffness, and general illness. Partially erupted teeth are also more prone to tooth decay and gum disease. because their hard-to-reach location and awkward positioning makes brushing and flossing difficult. The most common course of treatment is to have the wisdom teeth causing the problem removed.
Crown lengthening/gum lift
Sometimes after your dentist removes the tooth decay, there isn’t enough tooth structure left above the gum line to support a dental crown (or even a large tooth filling). Without enough structure to grab on to, dental crowns that don’t fit correctly may cause chronic inflammation and irritation. Even worse, tooth decay may get in under the dental crown, creating the need for more dental treatment. You might even lose the tooth completely. When this occurs, your dentist may have to perform a treatment called crown lengthening, by removing some of the gum tissue, bone or both to expose more of a tooth’s structure. Crown lengthening surgery can be performed on one or several teeth or your entire gum line, depending on your specific needs. Crown lengthening may also be used cosmetically to treat what’s called a “gummy smile.” When an unusually large amount of gum tissue shows around the upper teeth, crown lengthening might help. Your dentist can expose more of your teeth, then sculpt your gum line to create the look you want.
When a tooth is badly decayed or becomes infected one of the treatments used to repair or treat the tooth is called a root canal. “Root canal” is the term used to describe the natural cavity within the center of the tooth. The pulp or pulp chamber is the soft area within the root canal. The tooth’s nerve lies within the root canal. During a root canal treatment, the nerve and pulp are removed, and the inside of the tooth is cleaned and sealed. Absence of a nerve will not affect the day-to-day functioning of the tooth. Its only function is sensory — to provide the sensation of hot or cold. Without treatment, the tissue surrounding the tooth will become infected and abscesses may form. In addition to an abscess, an infection in the root canal of a tooth can cause swelling that may spread to other areas of the face, neck, or head, bone loss around the tip of the root, and drainage problems extending outward from the root. A hole can occur through the side of the tooth with drainage into the gums or through the cheek with drainage into the skin.
Some people suffer from natural bone insufficiency. This can be caused by a number of different issues including, gum disease, tooth development defects, wearing dentures long term, injury or trauma to the face and spaces left empty in mouth after teeth are removed. Bone grafting is a safe and highly successful procedure that allows dentists to rebuild bone and restore a natural jaw line and provides a sturdy foundation for implant-supported teeth. Implants are usually placed after the bone grafting has fused or integrated part of the existing bone. The length of time it takes for the fusion varies depending on the location of the graft and the density of the bone.
The pinhole surgery technique is a scalpel-free, suture-free procedure that corrects receding gums caused by gum disease and other factors. Periodontal disease or gum disease is the number one cause for gum recession. When tooth roots become more visible along with other imperfections such as gaps, spaces and abnormally large teeth it can make a smile look less attractive. This technique allows the dentist to make a small hole by a needle, then use specially designed instruments to gently loosen the gum tissue and glide it over the receded part of the tooth. Since there is no cutting or stitching, patients can expect minimal post-operative symptoms (pain, swelling and bleeding). Most patients also are pleasantly surprised by the instant cosmetic improvement.