Tooth ExtractionWatertown, MA
While our focus at Pediatric Dental Arts, is on preventative care for children, we can perform tooth extractions as needed. We are always searching for ways to avoid a tooth extraction by keeping your child's oral health in good shape. By cleaning your child's teeth on a regular basis, we will treat any signs of gum disease, cavities and infections. We will also discuss a healthy diet for your child to help keep his or her teeth healthy and intact. As a pediatric dentist, Dr. Raffa, can also restore your child's tooth if it has been damaged. These services can help your child to maintain healthy and natural teeth through life. If your child is experiencing discomfort or has a tooth that is in need of repair, we invite you to call our dental office at (617) 209-6434 to schedule an appointment. During the examination, we will let you know if your child's tooth can be saved or if a tooth extraction is the best option for preventing the spread of infection and eliminating any discomfort. In our Watertown, MA dentist office, we will take the necessary steps to ensure your child's comfort so that regardless of which treatment option you select, your child will feel relaxed during the process.
The process of having a tooth extraction
If your child needs to have a tooth extraction, there are several ways that the procedure can be conducted. First, we will numb the area of mouth we are extracting the tooth from so that your child does not feel any direct discomfort. Your child will feel pressure during the procedure but otherwise, remain relaxed and comfortable. If your child's tooth has matured and broken through the gums Dr. Raffa can use dental tools to wiggle the tooth and pull it out of the socket. Afterwards, the area will be thoroughly cleaned and gauze will be used to stop the bleeding while your child recovers. If your child's tooth is impacted or still below the surface, as is common with wisdom teeth, oral surgery may be necessary for removing it. When completing this procedure in our Watertown dental office, we typically create an incision in the gums so that there is a flap. The flap is gently lifted, granting us access to the impacted tooth. In many cases, we can wiggle the tooth and lift it out of the socket. If, however, there is bone or tissue on top of the tooth, it will need to be cut away first. When a tooth is particularly stubborn and not budging, we might need to break it into several pieces and remove it that way. Once the tooth has been removed from the socket, the area will be thoroughly cleaned before the flap is placed back down and sutured in place. Gauze is then used to stop the bleeding.
How to care for your child’s mouth after a tooth extraction
At Pediatric Dental Arts, we perform a tooth extraction in the least invasive manner possible to shorten the recovery time. We will need the patient to remain in the office for around an hour after the procedure. During this time, we will verify the bleeding has slowed down and the anesthesia has worn off. It is important for the parent to monitor the child after the procedure as well. At home, keep an eye on your child and make sure he or she gets some rest. Be sure to have your child drink plenty of water, avoiding anything that is too hot or too cold as the teeth can be sensitive for the first couple of days. We also recommend avoiding the use of a straw for the first few days, since the suction could cause the affected area to start bleeding. How the procedure was completed will influence how long it takes to recover. In general, the swelling will go down after a few days. In our pediatric dentist office, we recommend taking children's pain medication to help reduce the swelling and to use an ice pack/cold compress for 15 minutes at a time. During the recovery, your child should eat foods that are high in nutrition and soft. Drinking a smoothie with vegetables, fruit, yogurt and protein powder is an excellent way to keep your child's nutrition levels up without needing to bite down on anything. As your child adds other foods back in, be sure to start with things that are soft, like noodles, gradually working up to a full diet. While caring for your child's mouth after a tooth extraction, he or she will also need to keep the mouth as clean as possible. Have your child brush the surrounding teeth like normal and be careful to avoid the surgical site. Your child can also rinse with a mixture of water and baking soda (or an antibacterial mouthwash) to reduce the risk of an infection developing. Dr. Raffa, may want to see your child for a follow-up appointment as well.
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Signs that your child might need a tooth extraction
At Pediatric Dental Arts, we practice preventative care and can help in an emergency situation. If your child feels intense discomfort in a tooth or the jaw, give us a call. The pain could be a sign of a dental abscess or severe infection. Simultaneously, if it hurts to bite down or chew, this can also be an indication of a cavity or infection. Other signs, like puss or bleeding, indicate that you should call 617-209-6434 and schedule an appointment with our pediatric dentistry office right away.
What you should know about wisdom teeth removal
If your child still has his or her wisdom teeth, you may need to have the wisdom teeth removed. We invite you to schedule an appointment with our Watertown, Massachusetts dentist office so that we can examine your child's teeth and take X-rays. Once we have examined your child's teeth, we can determine whether or not your child should keep the wisdom teeth. Not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth pulled out. It depends on how much room your child has and whether the teeth are growing in straight or impacted. Also, if your child has worn braces, they might need to be removed to prevent them from pushing the other teeth forward. The process of removing wisdom teeth is roughly the same as any other tooth, with the exception of when and why we perform the procedure. At Pediatric Dental Arts, we typically recommend wisdom teeth removal in the teen years. General extractions are more common as people age, and have a tooth that needs to be removed due to a severe infection or significant damage. To find out whether or not you should keep your wisdom teeth, call (617) 209-6434 to schedule an appointment to speak with Dr. Raffa.
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