Under some circumstances, the dentist will recommend extracting a tooth. Extraction is the total removal of a tooth from its socket. There are many reasons extraction may be considered. For children whose baby teeth haven’t fallen out in time to allow their permanent teeth to come in, extraction of the baby teeth may be recommended. For older teens or young adults, wisdom teeth often need to be removed for space or infection reasons. Sometimes realignment necessitates the removal of some teeth to make room for others that need to be moved into place. In older adults, teeth that are broken or badly damaged that can’t be repaired through other treatments may need to be extracted as may a tooth which has become very loose or infected. Extractions may be simple (performed on a tooth visible above the gum line) or surgical (on a tooth that has broken off at the gum line or has not erupted yet). A surgical extraction is a more complex procedure and may need to be done by an oral surgeon. For a simple extraction, a local anesthetic is typically used. A surgical extraction may require an intravenous anesthetic to ensure comfort during the procedure. As a tooth extraction is a form of oral surgery, Dr. McArdle will provide detailed instructions on what to do before your procedure and what to expect after, including any needed pain management.