Sometimes, the condition of our children’s teeth is not as ideal as we would like it to be. On occasion, a tooth/teeth extraction may be necessary to remedy certain issues and to prevent other oral health conditions from occurring.
At Little Heroes Pediatric Dentistry, we know this can be a bit of a scary experience for your child, and may even make you a little nervous as a parent. But there really is no need to be!
We will do everything in our power to ensure that any tooth extraction you child may undergo is completely safe and as painless as possible.
Keep on reading to learn a little more about the process of a tooth extraction. And if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to any of South Texas pediatric dental offices.
How to Know if Your Child Needs a Tooth Extraction
If your child’s tooth has decayed beyond repair, then an extraction may be necessary to remove the tooth to inhibit germs and infections from spreading into the rest of the mouth.
Another reason a tooth may need to be extracted can be due to overcrowding in the mouth. When baby teeth do not fall out, this can cause issues with spacing and the growth of permanent teeth. Extractions may be necessary to fix this type of situation.
Additionally, teeth may be taken out for braces.
The procedure of extracting a tooth is determined by the state of the tooth itself. If it’s clearly visible the dentist may decide to do a quick and easy extraction by numbing the area with local anesthetic and simply removing the tooth with forceps.
However, if the tooth is not visible, your pediatric dentist’s procedure would involve removing some of the surrounding tissue of the gums, which would involve a more heavy sedation to aid in the procedure.
While this procedure may seem a bit scary, it is actually very safe and can be easily performed by a quality pediatric dentist.
Tips for the Recovery Process
Your child’s dentist will use a piece of gauze to stop any bleeding caused by the extraction. The piece of gauze will help the mouth to form a blood clot. However, until then, it is recommended to switch the gauze out every 20 minutes until the bleeding stops.
Once your child has gotten home, there are a couple of simple steps that you can take to help ease the pain and make the recovery process as comfortable as possible:
- Be sure to give your child over-the-counter or prescribed medicine to ease the pain they’ll feel after the anesthesia wears off.
- Use an ice pack for about 20 minutes to ease the swelling.
- Give your child only soft foods for 24 hours following the extraction.
- Do not let your child drink from a straw during the first 24 hours as this can dislodge the blood clot.
- It’s important that the first few days after, you monitor your child’s activities. Stick with calm activities, reducing the risk of your child reopening their wound.
- Tell your child to avoid brushing the area where the tooth has been extracted until it fully heals.
- Contact our Little Heroes dentist if your child comes down with a fever, experiences chills, or has any pain or swelling in the procedure area.
- Make sure to follow any instructions your dentist gives you.
- To clean the wound, your child can gently swish warm salt water around in their mouth after every meal.
- It is extremely important to keep your child’s mouth clean by having them brush twice a day, as well as flossing daily. This will help to keep bacteria from infecting the wound.
If your child is in need of a tooth extraction, contact Little Heroes Pediatric Dentistry to schedule an appointment.
With offices all throughout the RGV including Edinburg, Mission, San Juan, Pharr, McAllen, and even Laredo, we have got your back when it comes to your child’s oral health care.