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Tooth Extractions – Soldotna, AK

Better Oral Health By Removing Damaged Teeth

Older man and woman smiling after tooth extractions

No adult ever wants to lose a tooth, but there are circumstances when it is the best or even only option with your oral health in mind. Neglecting a badly decayed, damaged, or infected tooth can lead to even more pain and major problems later on. To save your smile from teeth that are past the point of no return, Dr. Mike Christensen is your emergency dentist who can perform quick and comfortable tooth extractions in Soldotna, AK. Read on or contact our dental office today to learn how this common dental treatment can remove dental pain and protect your oral health.

Why Choose Soldotna Dental Arts for Tooth Extractions?

  • Many Dental Insurance Plans Accepted
  • Same-Day Appointments Are Available
  • Sedation Dentistry Available For Comfort

Reasons Why Tooth Extractions Are Necessary

Woman in pain before tooth extraction

At Soldotna Dental Arts, we only recommend tooth extractions when all other options have been considered. Dr. Christensen will first evaluate your tooth to determine if it can be saved through root canal therapy, a dental crown, or other restorative treatment. However, tooth extraction may be the best solution if you have:

  • Severe dental infection that could spread to adjacent teeth
  • Impacted wisdom teeth
  • An overcrowded smile that prevents orthodontic treatment
  • Extensive tooth decay or damage
  • Advanced gum disease or jawbone deterioration

The Process of Removing a Tooth

Woman holding a tooth after extraction

There are two primary methods for tooth extractions in Soldotna: simple and surgical. If your tooth has fully emerged from the gums, Dr. Christensen will use forceps to gently rock it back and forth until the tooth naturally separates from your gum tissue. Your mouth will be numbed before the extraction begins to ensure your comfort.

Surgical extractions are typically performed on an impacted wisdom tooth or a tooth that has not erupted. In this case, he will make a small incision in the gums to reveal more of it. Next, the entire tooth is pulled out or cut into smaller pieces that are removed one by one.

The only way to determine which tooth extraction method will be required is to schedule a consultation at our dental office. Dr. Christensen will carefully evaluate your damaged or decaying tooth and create a custom removal plan based on your unique needs. 

Tooth Extraction Aftercare

Dentist extracting a tooth

After your tooth is extracted, it’s important you return home and rest. Dr. Christensen will provide you with personalized aftercare instructions to ensure a successful recovery. Common aftercare tips include:

  • Avoid eating hard, crunchy, sticky, sour, and spicy foods for about a week.
  • Avoid drinking through a straw, as the suction could dislodge the protective blood clot that forms over the extraction site.
  • Do not smoke, chew, or vape tobacco.
  • Take over-the-counter or prescription pain medication as directed by your dentist.
  • After 24 hours, mix warm water with half a teaspoon of salt and rinse your mouth gently.
  • Keep your mouth clean by brushing and flossing carefully plus rinsing with mouthwash gently. Don’t use mouthwash with alcohol.
  • You may experience swelling or light bleeding immediately after your tooth extraction. This is completely normal and not a cause for alarm. You can manage any mild discomfort by taking pain medication as directed or applying an ice pack to your cheek. If your discomfort doesn’t dissipate after a couple of days or gets worse, contact our dental office right away.

Understanding the Cost of Tooth Extractions

Dentist holding an extracted tooth

You only get one set of natural teeth as an adult, so it’s very important to take proper care of them. Even so, there are instances where someone diligent about oral hygiene will still require a tooth extraction in the interest of their oral health. If your emergency dentist in Soldotna said having one removed is necessary, it’s not unusual that your first thought might be to wonder about how much it is going to cost. It’s not easy to provide a one-size-fits-all answer since it comes down to the specifics of your particular case. To gain a better understanding of what goes into the expense, keep reading or contact our dental office! 

Factors That Can Affect Tooth Extraction Cost

X ray of impacted wisdom tooth

No two cases are the same which is why it’s not feasible to provide you with an accurate cost estimate until we conduct an exam. At your initial appointment, our team at Soldotna Dental Arts will evaluate your situation to pinpoint what’s necessary for your tooth extraction. Multiple factors can influence the overall price of your procedure including:

  • Complexity – The type of procedure you’ll need can also affect the overall price. For example, an impacted or erupted tooth extraction will cost more than a simple extraction because the treatment is more invasive.
  • Location – The location of the tooth that’s being pulled can influence the total cost of your extraction.
  • Anesthesia – Some patients will feel comfortable with just local anesthetic, while others may request dental sedation. 

Does Dental Insurance Cover Tooth Extractions?

Person using computer to view dental insurance forms

Fortunately, most dental insurance plans will partially cover the cost of tooth extraction in Soldotna after the deductible has been met. However, it’s worth noting there might be certain limits in place. For example, only a particular number of teeth may be covered, or perhaps there’s a waiting period before coverage kicks in.

Before committing to treatment, it’s a good idea to contact your insurance provider and confirm the details of your plan. Our team will be happy to help with this step to try to maximize your savings.

How to Make Tooth Extractions Affordable

Person using a tablet computer

Don’t have dental insurance? No problem! There’s still a way to make your dental bills easier to manage. We offer financing with a low-interest payment plan through CareCredit. Give us a call for further details! 

If your dentist in Soldotna recommended a tooth extraction, don’t worry! We are going to make sure you understand the procedure and develop a plan that makes sense for your budget.

Tooth Extractions Frequently Asked Questions

Since tooth extractions aren’t typically as routine as treatments like checkups or fillings, it’s natural for patients to have questions about this procedure. As always, our team is available to provide the specific answers you’re looking for at your initial appointment or, in some cases, over the phone. However, we know that some patients really value being able to do their research online first. For this reason, we’ve responded to a few of the most frequently asked questions about tooth extractions in Soldotna below.

Does Getting a Tooth Pulled Hurt?

Before the procedure, your mouth will be numbed with a local anesthetic by our dentist. If needed, we also offer multiple dental sedation options. This will help you feel comfortable during the extraction, and you shouldn’t feel any pain at all! However, expect some soreness and discomfort in the first few days following the extraction. You can easily manage your symptoms by diligently following the aftercare instructions you were given. Taking proper care of your mouth after extraction will not only promote faster healing but lower your risk of infection. If your pain worsens or you begin to exhibit other symptoms like developing a fever, contact our dental office right away for assistance.

How Should I Prepare for My Tooth Extraction?

Preparing for your tooth extraction is just as important as taking the right steps for recovery after the procedure. Before your extraction, we’ll answer any questions you have and explain how you can prep for your appointment. Our team here at Soldotna Dental Arts will provide you with specific instructions like only drinking water or picking up prescription medication. Make sure you have arrangements for someone to drive you home after the appointment since you’ll likely receive local or general anesthesia.

What’s the Recovery for Tooth Extractions Like?

Once the procedure is complete, your emergency dentist in Soldotna will give you a list of aftercare instructions. These are designed to help you prevent infection and heal comfortably. Some of the most important best practices are getting plenty of rest, keeping your mouth clean, sticking to soft foods, not spitting, and refraining from tobacco use. To keep discomfort at bay, you can place a cold compress against the outside of your cheek for 10 minutes at a time and take over-the-counter pain relievers as instructed. Around the three-day mark, you should begin to feel better.

What Are My Options for Replacing a Missing Tooth?

Filling the gap in your smile following a tooth extraction is essential for both appearance and function. For this reason, we will recommend a dental bridge, dentures, or dental implants. While dental bridges can replace 1-4 teeth, they need to be in a single row for this tooth-replacement solution. Partial and full dentures are a tried-and-true choice that can address moderate or severe tooth loss but cannot stimulate your jawbone to prevent bone loss. Fortunately, dental implants can effectively replace one, a few, or an entire arch of teeth. Since the implant posts are inserted directly into the jawbone, they are incredibly lifelike, extremely stable, and able to last for 20+ years with proper care.