Have you ever been tempted to pull a testy tooth on your own? Maybe give it the old string and doorknob treatment? If so, you’re not alone. A lot of patients would rather do anything but go to the dentist for a tooth extraction, but the truth is that having a tooth pulled by a well-trained dentist is a really easy experience for patients.

Reasons to Pull a Tooth

If a tooth is causing you pain, it definitely needs to be checked out by a dentist, but there are lots of other situations where it may be useful to have a tooth removed entirely. Reasons for extractions include but aren’t limited to teeth that are:

  • Badly broken
  • Severely decayed
  • Impacted
  • Poorly placed, causing damage to other teeth

Teeth may also need to be extracted if you’re preparing for orthodontics or any sort of false teeth, including implants or partials. In addition, serious gum disease often means parting ways with some unhealthy teeth.

Why Call a Dentist?

If tooth extraction is so simple, why not just do it yourself? We get asked this question enough that it’s important to address it here. Pulling a tooth yourself in an unhygienic environment without the proper tools can lead to oral infections, bone damage and, if it’s a tooth that’s got a lot going on below the gumline, damage to roots and even nerves in the mouth.

Besides, having a tooth extracted at the dentist means that other teeth that you may not realize are ticking time bombs have a chance to be evaluated. Severely impacted wisdom teeth, for example, will almost always require oral surgery, but if they’ve caused damage to nearby teeth, those may require removal or further treatment, too.

In other cases, teeth can be saved rather than pulled, but you’ll need a professional well-versed in the latest dental techniques to help you make that decision. And wouldn’t it be better to keep the tooth than to pull something that could have been preserved?