WARNING: Pictures may be too graphic for some people. Many pictures contain blood.
Poor Smiley has a fractured tooth! Since that tooth has a hole in it, the pulp canal is now exposed. The pulp canal contains all of the nerves and blood vessels of the tooth. When that is exposed to the environment, it can hurt! Best to get the tooth out to prevent any future complications.
We always want to be sure we remove every part of the tooth because any piece left over has the potential to harbor infection. There are several steps in getting these teeth out. First, you need to understand that many of the teeth have more than one root. These roots are sectioned to facilitate removal.
This particular premolar has 3 roots
Smiley receives a local nerve block to help numb the area (yes, even though these patients are under anesthesia, they can still feel pain!). Then, the gums are opened to allow access to those roots.
The gum tissue is quite strong and can be moved around if needed
The bone around the roots is then drilled. This allows access to the roots which allows much more gentle extraction techniques and less trauma to the surrounding bone, gums and teeth.
Can you see the roots now?
The three roots are then sectioned apart to allow for complete removal of all parts of the tooth without having to damage the remaining bone.
One by one, the roots are removed until there are none left!
The area is then prepared for closure and the gums are closed over the hole left from the missing tooth.
Gums closed over the hole with suture that will dissolve in 1-2 weeks
Smiley goes home on pain medications to make sure she stays as comfortable as possible during the healing process. She will also have to eat soft food as crunching dry food can disrupt those sutures. Even though she is missing a tooth, she will still smile all day for a pain free mouth!
Smiley taking a rest after her big day!
– Dr. Freihaut