A lot of people get extremely scared when they hear the words “tooth extraction”. Without any doubt, getting your tooth extracted can hurt. Although, trained professionals will normally give you local anesthesia during the procedure for the purpose of eliminating the pain. Tooth extraction is a common dental procedure, especially when it comes to wisdom teeth.
Typically, dentists prescribe over-the-counter medication following the procedure of tooth extraction in order to help manage the pain. The following sections of the article describe in detail the way pain is managed during and after the tooth extraction procedure and what a person should expect during the procedure itself.
People opt for tooth extraction when a tooth cannot be repaired or when it comes to wisdom teeth. Treatment costs depend on the complexity and duration of the tooth extraction procedure. Both surgical and non-surgical tooth extraction procedures require anesthesia, which increases the cost of the procedure. Below, you can find the average costs for tooth removal procedures:
- $75 to $300 for non-surgical tooth extraction
- $150 to $650 for surgical extraction with the use of anesthesia
- $185 to $700 for complicated surgical extractions
- $75 to $200 for wisdom tooth removal
Good news is that dental insurance plans cover some costs of preventive care, crowns, fillings, root canals, and surgeries, including tooth extraction.
What type of anesthesia is typically used during the procedure?
The type of anesthesia used during the procedure depends on a patient’s comfort level and anticipated complexity of the extraction process. In general, there are three types of anesthesia that are utilized by dental doctors during this type of dental procedure and they are as follows.
- Local anesthesia: this type of anesthesia involves your oral surgeon applying a numbing substance to the gums near the tooth that is being extracted. The next step is injecting local anesthesia via one or more injections near the area of the extraction. This anesthesia is not going to remove all sensation. A person might still feel movement and pressure but a patient will not experience any pain or sharpness. This type of anesthesia is generally used for simple extraction and a person is awake during the whole procedure.
- Sedation anesthesia: there are a number of options for sedatives. Laughing gas or nitrous oxide can offer minimal sedation for the purpose of relaxing during the procedure. Furthermore, your dentist can also offer you conscious sedation through a pill that needs to be taken before the tooth extraction procedure. Both of these options keep a person fully awake but will make the patient more relaxed and drowsy at the same time. Your dental doctor might also decide to go for more moderate sedation that involves sedation medication through an intravenous line in your arm.
It should be also said that sedation anesthesia can suppress the consciousness of a person. As a result, a patient will have limited memory of the procedure. Intravenous line sedation provides a deeper level of sedation. In any case, you will be given local anesthesia in order to numb the pain at the extraction area. Sedation anesthesia is typically used for more complex types of extractions. Your dental anxiety and the complexity of the procedure will dictate the type of sedation anesthesia.
- General anesthesia: this type of anesthesia is offered only on special occasions. General anesthesia is administered by IV in your arm or by inhalation through the nose. In some cases, both methods will be applicable. Unlike sedation and local anesthesia, general anesthesia makes a person fully unconscious and fully asleep. During the procedure, your blood pressure, temperature, and breathing will be monitored. General anesthesia allows feeling zero pain and you will not have any memory of the procedure. Normally, experienced cosmetic dentists give their patients local anesthesia in to help with postoperative discomfort.
What to expect during a tooth extraction procedure?
There are several types of procedure and they are mentioned below:
Simple extraction: this type of tooth extraction involves the use of local anesthesia. Normally, your dentist will make use of a special tool called elevator that will loosen the tooth in the gum. After that, forceps will be used to hold on to the tooth and pull it from the gum. With local anesthesia, you will still feel pressure but will not experience any pain. Even if it happens that you still experience some degree of pain, you can always voice your concern and a dentist will administer more local anesthesia to numb the site.
Surgical extraction: after administering the local anesthesia, your dental doctor will make an incision into your gum. It might be the case that the bone can be blocking access to the tooth’s root. If this is the case, the bone will need to be removed. The next step is removing the tooth. In order to ease the process, it will be divided into sections. Both surgical and simple extraction requires the area of extraction to be cleaned and placed with stitches to close the wound.
In order to control bleeding and help a blood clot form, gauze is usually placed over the site. Your oral surgeon will advise you to bite on this gauze for around 20 minutes following the tooth extraction procedure.
Is there any pain after the tooth extraction procedure?
The Oral Health Foundation says that different people heal differently. Dental specialists add that a patient might have tenderness and discomfort in the area of the extraction for 1-3 days following the procedure. You might also experience stiffness and tightness to the jaw and joint. This is because of the fact that you keep your mouth open during the procedure.
It is also worth mentioning that if you experience severe pain for more than three days, you might have a dry socket., which normally occurs when the blood clot in the extraction socket did not form or has been dislodged. As a result, the bone of the socket wall becomes exposed. This type of problem is generally treated with a medicated gel that is placed in the socket to cover up the socket.
To summarize the aforementioned, it can be said that the tooth extraction procedure always involves a certain degree of pain. This pain is normally managed with anesthesia. There are three main types of anesthesia, which are local anesthesia, sedation anesthesia, and general anesthesia. General anesthesia is the “strongest” type of anesthesia, which makes people fully unconscious and asleep. In addition to that, a person will lose any memory of the procedure.
Because of the fact that people typically experience pain following the procedure, dentists will prescribe over-the-counter pain medicine that will assist in managing pain after the procedure and help manage postoperative discomfort. In addition to that, every person heals from a tooth extraction procedure at a different rate. Although, most people will experience tenderness in the area that normally lasts for a few days.
You should keep in mind that if you experience severe pain for more than three days following the procedure it is recommended to seek immediate dentist’s help. This persistent pain can be caused by a dry socket, which occurs when the blood clot in the extraction socket has been dislodged or did not form.