Which of the following would you least like to do?
A. Eat the foods that you enjoy.
B. Feel comfortable sharing your smile.
C. Have a problematic tooth removed.
We are going to guess that you said C, and we completely understand if you did. Dentists like Dr. Mark W. Wilhelm want all our patients to keep as many teeth as possible.
Yet, millions of people have teeth removed and replaced every year so they can continue eating what they like and smiling at others.
If you live in or near Woodbury, MN, our dentist office can help you get rid of troublesome teeth with teeth extractions, and then we can restore your smile with one of our replacement options.
Why Teeth Need To Be Removed
Tooth removals and extractions are often the last resort in dental care. Dentists want you to keep as many of your natural teeth for as long as possible throughout your life.
If a dentist is recommending tooth extraction, it’s because that tooth is creating a long-term oral health problem. Here are some of the most common reasons teeth are removed:
▪︎ A Tooth Is Impacted – This can happen to any tooth, but it frequently occurs with wisdom teeth. Impacted teeth are not able to erupt fully.
Whether your tooth is fully impacted (remains below the gumline) or partially impacted (breaks the gumline but doesn’t come in completely), it can cause similar issues.
An impacted tooth is more likely to develop infections, or it may press into neighboring teeth creating pain or alignment issues.
▪︎ A Tooth Is Infected – If bacteria reach the center of a tooth, the soft tissue can become infected and inflamed. In some cases, a root canal treatment can remove the infection and restore the tooth.
If the damage is too great, then removal may be the only real option to prevent the infection from spreading.
▪︎ A Tooth Has Extensive Decay – Many teeth infections start with tooth decay. As a cavity grows it may reach those soft tissues, or it may cause widespread damage throughout your tooth.
When the damage is too great for a dental filling or dental crown, that’s when removal is recommended.
▪︎ A Tooth Has Been Broken — We won’t list the many ways you can break your tooth. Just know that in cases of a severe break, tooth removal may be the best treatment.
Tooth Replacement Options
With the exception of wisdom teeth and teeth that are removed in preparation for orthodontic care, you should try to replace a tooth as soon as possible after it is removed.
At our dentist office in Woodbury, MN, we have a couple great ways to fill in the gaps in your smile.
The best option is a dental implant with a dental crown. Dental implants replace the roots of missing teeth. Dental crowns replace the natural crowns.
When they are combined, you have a complete tooth replacement in every sense. Implant-supported crowns look like real teeth and function like real teeth, too.
By replacing your extracted tooth, you also are supporting your remaining healthy teeth, too.
Another option is a dental bridge. Before dental implants, a dental bridge was often the best replacement available.
A bridge is formed by fusing three dental crowns together. The teeth on either side of your missing tooth are reshaped to support the bridge.
When the bridge is bonded to those teeth, the crown in the middle fills the gap and restores the appearance of your smile and much of the function of your teeth.
Why You Should Come To Us
You can go to a lot of dentist offices for restorative care, but at our office, you will be treated by a prosthodontist.
Prosthodontists like Dr. Wilhelm are specialists in implants and restorative dentistry. After graduating from the Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine, Dr. Wilhelm completed a master’s degree and specialty certificates in Prosthodontics and Maxillofacial Prosthetics at Indiana University.
Continuing education has remained a regular part of his practice. This allows him to provide the most effect care for our patients.
Removal, Replacement, Restoration
Dr. Wilhelm can do all of this and more for your smile. To see for yourself, make an appointment by calling 651-319-9064 or filling out our online form.