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A dental extraction (also 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 render the tooth non-restorable. Extractions of impacted or problematic wisdom teeth are routinely performed, as are extractions of some permanent teeth to make space for orthodontic treatment.
The most common reason for extraction is tooth damage due to breakage or decay. There are additional reasons for tooth extraction:
Extractions are often categorized as "simple" or "surgical.”
Simple extractions are performed on teeth that are visible in the mouth, usually under local anaesthetic, and require only the use of instruments to elevate and/or grasp the visible portion of the tooth.
Surgical extractions involve the removal of teeth that cannot be easily accessed, either because they have broken under the gum line or because they have not erupted fully. Surgical extractions are usually performed under a general anaesthetic.
Following extraction of a tooth, bleeding is common in this first hour, but its likelihood decreases quickly as time passes, and is unusual after 24 hours. The raw open wound overlying the dental socket takes about 1 week to heal. Thereafter, the socket will gradually fill in with soft gum tissue over a period of about one to two months. Final closure of the socket with bony remodeling can take six months or more.
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