A tooth extraction is the removal of a tooth from its socket. Extractions are performed for a number of reasons, but most commonly because a tooth cannot be restored due to tooth decay, periodontal disease or dental trauma and especially when they are associated with toothache.
Tooth extraction is relatively straightforward, and the vast majority can be usually performed quickly by only using local anaesthetic injections to eliminate pain. Some teeth are more difficult to remove for various reasons – most commonly the tooth’s position, the shape of its roots and its overall integrity.
Extractions are categorized as simple or surgical. Simple extractions are performed on teeth that are visible in the mouth and require the use of instruments to elevate and/or grip 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 level of gum or because they are not fully erupted.