Tooth extractions are one of the most common dental procedures in the world. Dentists remove teeth to fix overcrowding issues, prevent wisdom teeth pain, or make space for permanent teeth. Nowadays, dentists make every effort to save even the most grossly damaged teeth – through a root canal treatment procedure. However, there are still certain situations where decayed or severely damaged teeth have to be pulled out – and later on, replaced with a suitable option such as dental implants.
When we talk about dental extractions, we usually imagine a scenario where we sit on the dental chair and the dentist is pulling the tooth out. But, “what if I can pull my own, or my child’s tooth out, without having to pay the dentist’s fees?” you might ask yourself. Well, this may sound like a cost-effective idea, and you may find some videos on Youtube teaching you how to do it, but doing so would do more bad to your child’s oral and physical health than good.
How and when can I pull teeth at home?
Dental experts throughout the world do not recommend extracting teeth at home, especially the permanent teeth. However, you may remove your child’s tooth if it is sufficiently mobile and is about to fall off. Permanent teeth should only be removed by a professional. But you must make sure not to extract a milk tooth prematurely. This is because the milk teeth serve as placeholders for their permanent successors. Suppose the milk teeth fall-off, or are extracted prematurely. In that case, the neighboring milk teeth slide into the gap and make it difficult for the permanent tooth to erupt into optimal position and angulation.
Generally, it is not a good idea to attempt removing your child’s tooth. If it is mobile, let it fall-off naturally – ask your child to eat fruits with thick skins like apples or bite onto slightly hard foods, and the tooth will come out itself. If you think it’s time to pull one of your child’s teeth, wash your hands and try wiggling it to gauge how attached it is to the gums or jaw. If you feel very little resistance, the tooth is ready to go.
Twist the tooth slightly to the left or right, and the tooth should fall out right away. Check the area for any tooth fragments. If you feel that a tooth fragment remains in the socket, immediately take your child to a dental professional to remove the chipped tooth.
Why Should you not Pull out Permanent Teeth at Home?
Unlike the milk teeth that are smaller and less adherent to the tooth socket, the permanent teeth are more extensive, and they are firmly attached to the underlying jawbone and the gums. Therefore, they require more skill and expertise to remove them. Suppose you attempt removing a permanent tooth at home. In that case, it will most likely fracture during the process – demanding an even more complicated surgical procedure to remove the broken tooth fragments – and may even cause severe tooth infection.
When should I see a professional?
Even though your child’s baby teeth can be extracted at home, there are some situations when it’s best to visit your local dentist’s office. If you attempt to remove the tooth, but some fragments remain, or if your child is experiencing lingering discomfort, then you must contact a dentist immediately.
Dr. Mehmood Asghar is a dentist, an educationist, and a researcher in dental biomaterials. Dr. Asghar is currently working as an Assistant Professor in Dental Biomaterials at the National University of Medical Sciences, Pakistan, in addition to pursuing a Ph.D. in Dental Biomaterials. His research interests include silver-based medicaments for dental use, nanoparticles, fiber-reinforced composites, dental polymers, and contemporary dental ceramics. Apart from his professional activities, Dr. Asghar loves reading, writing, and working out. Currently writing for Bond St Dental.
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