One of the dreadful things that many adult patients don't want to hear from their general dentist (and understandably so) is that they will need to have their tooth (or teeth) removed. While dentures are ready replacements for missing natural teeth, they can never look and function exactly like natural teeth. Nonetheless, it is the dentist's job to recommend the best treatment options for the problems that their patients face, and if they recommend tooth extraction, they have good reasons for reaching that decision.
Here are some common reasons as to why your general dentist may suggest that you need to undergo a tooth extraction procedure.
Severe tooth decay
Anyone who has suffered from tooth decay at some point will tell you that it can be a source of discomfort and excruciating pain. Permanent teeth that have become severely decayed typically cannot be saved because the patient would have waited too long before seeing a dentist for treatment—by then, the decay would have reached the pulp. Under these circumstances, the only option available may be to have the decayed teeth removed.
Advanced gum disease
Periodontal disease can cause extensive damage to the gums such that the supported teeth are also affected. As gum disease exacerbates, the teeth becomes supported and surrounded by less tissue and bone. This often causes the teeth to loosen to such an extent that tooth removal is the only effective treatment.
Overcrowded or extra teeth
Having too many teeth in the mouth is a cosmetic dental issue. To remedy the problem, a dentist may recommend that some permanent teeth be pulled out so they can leave enough room the rest of the teeth to be properly aligned. Overcrowded teeth is also a common cause of impacted teeth—a dentist may suggest tooth extraction if extra teeth are preventing other teeth from sprouting through the gum.
Sometimes, a tooth may be extensively cracked or broken such that it cannot be repaired. For example, a tooth may break at the gum line, making it hardly visible to allow for tooth restoration, for example. In such a situation, it would be best to remove the remaining part of the tooth completely, so as to leave room for a new tooth replacement.
It's essential for you to know about all the potential risks and benefits associated with tooth extraction, as well as possible outcomes of this kind of dental surgery ahead of time. This way, you will know what to expect.