Patients & Visitors
General Dental Treatment
Overview
Extraction
Fillings
Scaling & Polishing
Teeth Grinding
Extraction
A dental extraction, sometimes referred to as exodontia, is the removal of a tooth from the mouth. Extractions are performed for a wide variety of reasons, including tooth decay that has destroyed enough tooth structure to prevent restoration. Extractions of impacted or problematic wisdom teeth are also routinely performed, as are extractions of some permanent teeth to make space for orthodontic treatment.
FAQs on After Extractions
Frequently Asked Questions On After Dental Extractions:
  1. I've had my tooth out - what should I do now?
    Take it easy for the rest of the day. Take as little exercise as you can, and rest as much as you can. Keep your head up to avoid any bleeding.
  2. What precautions should I take?
    Avoid hot food or drinks until the anaesthetic wears off. This is important as you cannot feel pain properly and may burn or scald your mouth. Also be careful not to chew your cheek. This is quite a common problem, which can happen when there is no feeling. If you do rest, try to keep your head higher for the first night using an extra pillow if possible. It is also a good idea to use an old pillowcase, or put a towel on the pillow, in case you bleed a little.
  3. Should I rinse my mouth out?
    Do not be tempted to rinse the area for the first 24 hours. It is important to allow the socket to heal, and you must be careful not to damage the blood clot by eating on that side or letting your tongue disturb it. This can allow infection into the socket and affect healing.
  4. Is there anything else I should avoid?
    Avoid alcohol for at least 24 hours, as this can encourage bleeding and delay healing. Eat and drink lukewarm food as normal but avoid chewing on that area of your mouth.
  5. When should I brush?
    It is just as important, if not more so, to keep your mouth clean after an extraction. However, you do need to be careful around the extraction site.
  6. What do I do if it bleeds?
    First thing to remember is that there may be some slight bleeding for the first day or so. Many people are concerned about the amount of bleeding. This is due to the fact that a small amount of blood is mixed with a larger amount of saliva, which looks more dramatic than it is. If you do notice bleeding, do not rinse out, but apply pressure to the socket. Bite firmly on a piece of sterile gauze for at least 15 minutes. Make sure this is placed directly over the extraction site and that the gauze is replaced if necessary. If the bleeding has not stopped after an hour or two, please contact your dentist.
  7. If I am in pain, what should I take?
    There will usually be some tenderness in the area for the first few days, and in most cases some simple pain relief is enough to ease the discomfort. What you would normally take for a headache should be enough. However, always follow the manufacturer's instructions and if in doubt check with your doctor first. Do not take aspirin, as this will make your mouth bleed.
  8. If I am still in pain, what could it be?
    Sometimes an infection can get in the socket, which can be very painful. This is where there is little or no blood clot in the tooth socket and the bony socket walls are exposed and become infected. This is called a dry socket and in some cases is worse than the original toothache! In this case, it is important to see your dentist, who may place a dressing in the socket and prescribe a course of antibiotics to help relieve the infection. You may also feel the sharp edge of the socket with your tongue and sometimes small pieces of bone may work their way to the surface of the socket. This is perfectly normal.
  9. Will my dentist need to see me again?
    If it has been a particularly difficult extraction, the dentist will give you a follow-up appointment. This could be to remove any stitches that were needed, or simply to check the area is healing well.
Fillings
A dental restoration or dental filling is a dental restorative material used artificially to restore the function, integrity and morphology of missing tooth structure. The structural loss typically results from caries or external trauma. Dental restorations may be fabricated out of a variety of materials such as dental amalgam, glass ionomer cement and composite resins. Several factors influence the performance, durability, longevity and cost of dental restorations. These factors include: the patient's oral and general health, the components used in the filling material; where and how the filling is placed; the chewing load that the tooth will have to bear; and the length and number of visits needed to prepare and adjust the restored tooth.
Several factors influence the performance, durability, longevity and cost of dental restorations. These factors include: the patient's oral and general health, the components used in the filling material; where and how the filling is placed; the chewing load that the tooth will have to bear; and the length and number of visits needed to prepare and adjust the restored tooth.
Teeth Grinding
What are the consequences of teeth grinding?
Unfortunately many patients do not even know that they have a grinding problem. It is only when they complain about the consequences of teeth grinding that the problem is diagnosed.
Consequences of grinding include:
  • Broken restorations (like fillings, crowns, bridgework or veneers);
  • Excessive wear or damage to the teeth;
  • Pain around the neck, cheek or temple region;
  • Pain around the Tempuro Mandibular Joint (TMJ).
How do you know if you grind your teeth at night? Could you describe the type of sound a teeth grinder makes at night?
Many times it is the spouse or sleeping companion/partner that notices the grinding sound before the sufferer even realises he/she has the problem. This grinding sound can sometimes be really loud.