What are Tooth Extractions?
Extractions are done as a way to preserve your oral health and remove problematic teeth. In some cases, you may need to have teeth removed because of advanced gum disease. In other cases, you'll need an extraction because you have an impacted wisdom tooth. We always perform extractions in our office in a safe, comfortable and relaxed manner at your own convenience.
Laser Frenectomy – How Does It Work?
A soft tissue laser does not cut. Instead, it vaporizes tissue with light energy almost painlessly. In addition, the laser procedure causes almost no bleeding. Lasers sterilize at the touch and therefore cause less risk of infection. Healing is very quick—a laser stimulates bio-regeneration. The result is beautiful tissue and less chance of relapse.
What Does It Really Mean?
Ankyloglossia, or tongue-tie, is the restriction of tongue movement as a result of fusion or adherence of the tongue to the floor of the mouth. A tongue-tie is caused by a frenum that is abnormally short or attached too close to the tip of the tongue.
Normal tongue function is important for multiple reasons. Among the many benefits, normal tongue function allows a baby to latch adequately and breastfeed efficiently, promotes normal speech development, makes it possible for a child to self-cleanse the mouth during eating, supports adequate swallowing patterns, allows for proper growth and development, and makes fun little things like eating ice cream, kissing, or sticking your tongue out to catch snowflakes possible.
Challenges That Can Occur With A Tongue-Tie
- Inability to open mouth widely, affecting speech and eating habits
- Inability to speak clearly when talking fast/loud/soft
- Clicking jaws
- Pain in jaws
- Protrusion of the lower jaw (inferior prognathism)
- Effects on social situations such as kissing, licking ice cream
- Dental health complications such as a tendency toward inflamed gums and increased need for periodontal surgery
- In the elderly, difficulty in keeping a denture in place
How Can A Lip-Tie Affect My Child?
A LIP-TIE OCCURS WHEN THE UPPER LIP REMAINS ATTACHED TO THE UPPER GUM. CHALLENGES THAT CAN OCCUR IN CHILDREN AND INFANTS WITH MODERATE TO SEVERE LIP-TIES INCLUDE:
- Pain with breastfeeding
- Inability to adequately flange the maxillary lip upward during breastfeeding, affecting an infant’s latch and ability to create a good seal
- Formation of a large gap between the maxillary central incisors, called a diastema
- Difficulties with brushing and flossing
- Increased risk of dental decay
- Repeated trauma to the maxillary frenum because it is so low and prominent
Why are Tooth Extractions needed?
Extractions are often performed when there is no other way to save a tooth. Some teeth are simply an issue to your oral health, so it's best to remove them before they're allowed to cause issues with shifting, infection and intra-oral damage. Some of the reasons you may want or need an extraction include:
- Impacted wisdom teeth
- Loose or severely decayed teeth
- Teeth that are cracked or broken below the gum line
- Stubborn baby teeth
- You're looking to avoid having additional treatment done
Who is a candidate for Tooth Extractions?
With the help of an examination, we can determine if you might need an extraction. Most patients who need an extraction can and should have the procedure done. Leaving a problem tooth intact can cause issues down the road with infections and abscesses. We will take x-rays to help in further identifying the need for an extraction.
What happens during a Tooth Extraction?
We first provide you with anesthetic or sedation of your choosing. We can discuss our sedation options with you during your consultation. Once you're comfortable, we will loosen and remove the tooth. We may place sutures if they are needed to close the gums. We have you bite down on gauze to stop the bleeding. If you've been sedated, we will bring you to a recovery room to fully wake up. You should be brought home by a friend or relative if general sedation has been used. We provide our patients with important aftercare instructions that must be followed.
At Art of Pediatric Dentistry in Bellevue, we offer gentle tooth extraction services for children from the Kirkland, Redmond, and Issaquah areas. Our team is experienced in providing comfortable and stress-free extractions. If you think you might need a tooth extraction, call our office today and we will be happy to get you in for an appointment.