About Tooth Extractions
No one likes to have a tooth extracted, but sometimes removing a tooth is the best course of action. At City Smiles DC, we will perform a thorough examination of your teeth before recommending a tooth (or teeth) removal, especially in a painful, emergency situation. Washington, DC, board-certified general dentist, Dr. Stuart Ross, can perform simple or surgical extractions in his office with several sedation techniques based on your needs. In the event you or your child need to have an impacted tooth (or wisdom teeth) removed, Dr. Ross can also perform this procedure as well. Schedule a consultation for you or your child with Dr. Ross at your earliest convenience.
With a simple extraction, the dentist will give the patient a local anesthetic to alleviate any pain. The dentist will use a pair of forceps to grip the impacted tooth and loosen it from the jawbones and the ligaments which hold it in place. The socket that holds the tooth must be widened and enlarged to separate the tooth from the ligaments. A device called a dental elevator, a screwdriver-like tool, is placed between the tooth and gum to make it easier to remove the tooth by expanding the socket.
Wisdom teeth or any teeth not visible above the gum line, such as severely broken teeth or teeth with long, curved roots require a more complex surgical extraction. Anesthesia is often used on the patient prior to procedure. To obtain access to the impacted tooth, the dentist may need to cut through bone, gums, and tissue. Sometimes, the dentist will need to cut the tooth in pieces in order to fully remove it.
"Dr Ross and his team are friendly and committed to your comfort and quality care. Dr. Ross found a tooth that required surgery and quickly referred me for an additional consultation and to an oral surgeon. I am grateful he identified the problem before it became a big problem. Melissa did an excellent job and gave me a thorough and pain free cleaning. The front desk are so kind and helped with additional appointments. Highly recommend."- S.M. / Yelp / Jan 24, 2018
"Going to the dentist has never been so pleasant! Dr Ross is wonderful as is his staff."- M.D. / Google / Dec 10, 2017
"I have been getting my dental needs met at City Smiles since 1996, even though I have been living in London for the past two-and-a-half years. From the moment you step into the waiting room to the moment you step out of the dental chair, Dr. Ross and his associates are warm and welcoming. After twenty years of going to City Smiles, I feel like I am visiting an old friend who just happens to be incredibly handy with dental implements. Speaking of which: Dr. Ross and his team are constantly going to conferences and seminars so that they are on the cutting edge of dentistry. They have the latest in technology, and the care at City Smiles just keeps getting better and better. In over twenty years I have never had a complaint. My teeth look good and feel good, and I've been told I have great gums. I never thought I'd say this, but I actually enjoy going to the dentist. City Smiles is worth crossing the Atlantic for."- S.K. / Google / Dec 03, 2017
"I was referred to Dr. Ross for veneers. Wow.....I've never felt so comfortable in the dentist chair until my visit at City Smiles. Dr. Ross and Tina were so professional, warm, and comforting. I had a lengthy procedure - 6 veneers in one day. The technology they offer creates veneers almost instantly. They talked me through every step of the process. I highly recommend Dr. Ross for veneers and plan to use City Smiles for my regular visits."- K.A. / Yelp / Nov 27, 2017
"A completely different experience than I am accustomed to from a dental practice. I have been to two types of dentists before. One has the dentists doing the cleaning and x-rays and just about everything else. The other had a hygienist do the cleaning and the dentist would come in for about 10 seconds and say "You need to brush and floss more". In either case the level of care was probably average. Dr. Ross's office was a completely new experience. Based on his credentials and the scattered gray hair (he seems to have a great humbled sense of humor too), he has been practicing for a long time so he has a lot of experience, but it looks like he keeps up with all of the latest technology and has not stagnated. Some of the equipment is impressive. I am an Engineer so it was interesting to hear about some of it and Dr Ross was excited to show me. Dr. Ross spent more time with me than any other health care provider I have ever seen. He took many close up digital images of my teeth from every angle and used a digital X-Ray machine. He was instantly able to show me exactly where the problems were and it was very clear. I could also see quite clearly that I needed to get a sharper razor. All of the other dentists I have been to look with their eyes and try to explain in words what they are seeing. It might be obvious to them but the pictures really helped me. The hygienist was very professional and thorough. If your hygienist is not referencing X-Rays and close up images as they are cleaning your teeth and gums, they are behind the times. They are flying blind. You might get out of your dentist with a checkup and cleaning for $99.95, but it looks like Earl Sheib cleaned your teeth. By the way, the 1990's called, they want their dentist back.The receptionist staff was friendly and patient. I think with the proliferation of online reviews, many practices are paying more attention to how patients are treated by employees other than just the doctor. I have noticed an improvement at other dentist's/doctor's offices and it is very clear here that it is important. Dr. Ross was forthcoming on the costs of the various procedures I should consider, some of which he could provide and others he could not. Once I saw the pictures and he explained how not fixing certain issues would degrade my teeth faster since the hard enamel is worn or chipped, it made sense what I needed to do. I have had a few crashes/hits that affected my teeth so I was not expecting the best report card, however, I did not feel pressured to do anything at any point. In fact, I left the office without making any follow up appointments. No medical procedure is cheap so there are tough decisions to be made. I will be going back to have some more work done soon though, and will schedule the rest over time. I would rather deal with the issues up front while I am younger than be getting a ton of bridges, root canals, implants ... when I am 75 which would ultimately cost a lot more money. And I will have better looking teeth now. Probably like remodeling the kitchen right after you buy the house or right before you sell it. Do I want a nice smile now or do I want to look good at my funeral? I came in from Rockville to specifically to see Dr. Ross because my wife went to see him based on the great reviews and a recommendation from a friend. She had nothing but good things to say when she came home and had two teeth perfectly repaired. There are plenty of other dentists between my house and the middle of DC but I felt like I needed to re-baseline what I should expect from a dentist. Glad I went. There is a good pastry shop, Paul, right around the corner too. Dirty up all of the work you just had done. 3% of the reason I trekked in to DC. And no matter what they say, those donuts are not "oven baked" they are deep fried. Maybe I should write a review of Paul while I am at it."- R.B. / Google / Nov 12, 2017
What to Expect
Depending on whether the dentist performs a simple or surgical tooth extraction, the technique and experience will differ. In either case, there will be a thorough examination prior to extraction when X-rays will be taken to determine the type of extraction needed. In addition, the patient is usually offered a form of sedation to help the patient feel comfortable and at ease during the procedure. It’s advised that the patient not eat or drink anything for 6 – 8 hours before the surgery. If a patient experiences nausea or vomiting before the extraction, they will need to call the dentist’s office to possibly reschedule to avoid health complications. Smoking on the day of surgery is prohibited because of the risks and complications it can pose in the healing process.
After either type of extraction, a blood clot will usually form in the socket of the removed tooth. After a simple extraction, the dentist will pack the area with gauze and have the patient bite down in order to stop bleeding. With surgical extraction, the dentist will stitch the area and then place the gauze pads. After extraction, the patient should refrain from unnecessary eating, drinking, or talking for at least 2 hours. After the bleeding has stopped, the patient should drink plenty of cold or lukewarm fluids.
On the first day after the extraction, only soft foods should be eaten and the patient shouldn’t brush or rinse their teeth for 12 hours following the extraction. When brushing is resumed, the extraction area should be avoided with the toothbrush, but the area can be gently rinsed with salt water. The patient also shouldn’t spit forcefully, which may dislodge the blood clot. The healing process usually starts about 1 – 2 weeks following the tooth extraction. This is the time when new gum tissue and bone will fill in the gap where the tooth or teeth have been removed. After about 3 – 4 weeks, the gums should be fully healed. Complete healing of the entire mouth can take up to 6 months, but it varies from person to person.
There are several factors that determine how much a tooth extraction will cost, such as the type of extraction, the difficulty of removing the tooth, and how many teeth will be extracted. During the patient’s consultation, the dentist will provide a breakdown of pricing. Our front office can also check with the patient’s insurance carrier since many dental insurance plans will pay a percentage of the cost, if the surgery is a medical necessity.
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Want to Know More?
If you think that you could benefit from a tooth extraction, we would be more than happy to assist you. Give our friendly staff a call today at City Smiles DC, so we can schedule your consultation immediately. During your consultation, the dentist can give you all of the information you need about tooth extraction to help you make an informed decision.