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  • What will happen about the missing tooth/teeth?

    Not all teeth which are extracted need to be replaced.ย If you are already wearing dentures, then an addition to the existing denture may be possible.

    Other options may include bridges or implants.

    As every case is different, this discussion should take place with your own dentist.

  • Will my gum need to be cut?

    Sometimes teeth can break because they are fragile, quite thin, or they have large fillings in them. When this occurs, the gum may need to be cut and lifted so that we can see more clearly.

    Sometimes drilling a small amount of bone away, and perhaps even cutting the tooth into small pieces, is necessary. This procedure may take a little bit longer than expected and there may be more swelling afterwards.

    Usually you will have some stitches in your mouth that normally dissolve, but can take a few weeks to do so.

  • What are the after-effects of having a tooth out?

    After a dental extraction, patients will normally get some pain and discomfort, so you will be advised of appropriate painkillers.

    Some swelling and bruising may occur which is usually worse 48 hours after the procedure.

    Infection can occur after any extraction, and if this occurs you may need some simple treatment with a dentist to relieve this.

    Please note that smoking can affect the healing after an extraction and we would advise you that stopping smoking before and after an extraction can reduce the chances of infection.

    If you require more information about stopping smoking please ask a member of staff before your procedure. Or help in giving up, call the NHS Stop Smoking Helpline on 0800 022 4332 or go on their website:

    Some teeth are more complicated than others and your dentist will advise you if you have any concerns about your extraction. This may be due to the unusual shape of the roots or the position in your mouth.

    In most cases the procedure is completely successful, but on some occasions the process may be more complicated because the tooth breaks.

  • What anaesthetic will be used?

    The tooth will usually be removed using local anaesthetic, which is administered with an injection in the gum.

    This will last up to a few hours, so care must be taken to avoid biting your lip whilst it is numb.

  • What are the risks?

    Please remember that some teeth sit close to the nerves, other teeth and other structures in the jaw. If this is the case, you will be warned about specific risks in advance of your own treatment.

    Any possible difficulties or complications will be discussed with you before your treatment starts.

    Frequently occurring problems

    • Bleeding
    • Swelling
    • Pain
    • Failure of local anaesthetic
    • Bruising
    • Infection (dry socket)
    • Breakage of the tooth or root
    • Limited opening or stiffness of the jaw

    Other, less common, complications

    • A hole into the sinus that may need surgical repair
    • Displacement of the tooth into the sinus or fracture of the tuberosity (bone next to the top back tooth).
    • Nerve damage leading to altered sensation or numbness of your lip, teeth, tongue or gums. You may feel some numbness over your face or within your mouth due to a bruised nerve. This usually goes away on its own, but it can take a few months.
    • Retained root which, after discussion, may be best left in place.
  • Why do I need treatment?

    You need to have a tooth extracted because it may be broken beyond repair or is causing pain and infection.

    It may also be part of another plan e.g.: ortho treatment for braces.

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    Nicholas Lee: Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon, Sheffield UK