The term “simple extraction” is used because the shape of the tooth and root allows for a fairly uncomplicated removal. An example would be the normally cone-shaped upper front tooth that offers a resistance free extraction.
The simple extraction process is quite straightforward. The periodontal ligament holds your teeth in place. The periodontal ligament is an elastic tissue with tiny fibers that attaches the tooth to surrounding supporting bone. With careful manipulation by the hands of an experienced dentist, the fibers loosen. Once the fibers have detached, the tooth can be removed with little effort; with the aid of local anesthesia, you should not experience pain. You may experience slight pressure.
Immediately after removal of the tooth, we commonly insert bone grafting material in the socket to minimize bone loss. If you’re planning an implant or other restoration in this area, the bone graft helps make the next phase simpler. After your extraction, we place sterile gauze over the site until a blood clot forms. If you have a large socket, we may place a few dissolvable stitches to close the area and promote faster healing. Post-extraction materials are given to you for proper caring and cleaning methods. After extraction procedures, we commonly prescribe antibiotics to reduce the chance of infection and anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce potential discomfort.
Although a simple extraction is a very common procedure, we still perform a proper assessment of the tooth and the surrounding bone beforehand, which includes x-rays to determine the tooth’s exact structure and position.
It’s our hope you’ll have your natural teeth for a lifetime. But if you find yourself needing a simple extraction, you can rest assured it’s a very common — and uneventful — experience.
If you would like to more about simple tooth extractions, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Simple Tooth Extraction.