Maple Glen, PA Dentist

Third molars, or wisdom teeth, are the last set of permanent molars to emerge. These teeth are also the most likely to require extraction, due to any of several complications. However, other teeth may also require extraction if they cannot be saved by root canal therapy or other treatment.

Some of the most common reasons to have teeth extracted include:

  • Impacted tooth – tooth is trapped beneath bone or gums and not emerging properly
  • Crowding or small mouth – emerging teeth may cause other teeth to shift or crack due to lack of space
  • Decay or infection – when a tooth is affected by extreme decay or infection that cannot be corrected with filling or root canal treatment, it may require extraction

Dr. Rachel Lewin may recommend extraction of one or more of your teeth if any of these issues apply to you. During your consultation, we may also recommend sedation dentistry to make your experience more comfortable.

Dr. Lewin does not remove third molars, as a general rule, and instead refers them out to her network of trusted, conveniently located oral surgeon specialists for your comfort and convenience. If it is determined that an implant is likely to be placed following extraction, Dr. Lewin may refer you to a specialist for completion of bone grafting and/or ridge preservation procedures.

Post-Extraction Care

After your extraction, you may need to be driven home by a friend or family member. You will require rest, but lie with your head propped on a pillow to prevent prolonged bleeding.

We will apply gauze when your extraction is complete and ensure that you have formed an appropriate clot prior to dismissing you from your appointment. Follow instructions for when and how to change gauze. Holding firm pressure is key, and it is important never to remove dried gauze as it can dislodge a newly-formed clot- always moisten gauze before removal. Use pain medication and ice packs as directed to best manage pain and swelling. If bleeding continues beyond 24 hours, contact our office immediately.

For the first few days following extraction, limit your diet to soft foods. Avoid smoking and/or vaping, vigorous swishing and spitting, or using a straw, as the negative pressures created by these actions can slow or dislodge clotting and loosen sutures.

For more information or an extraction consultation, contact our office.