Tooth extraction is a procedure that can be done at home. You should know, however, that there are pros and cons. The pro of at-home extraction is avoiding the cost of a visit to the dentist. The con is the tooth possibly could break off, you might not be addressing potential infection and/or abscess and there may be more pain involved since you probably don't have the same training and tools a dentist does.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Pain reliever (optional)
Determine the looseness the tooth. If the tooth is not loose at all, you are in for an extremely difficult extraction; it would be best in this situation to call the dentist. If the tooth is loose--especially if it's dangling--you will have a greater chance of pulling it successfully with minimum pain. Baby teeth and teeth that are loose due to gum disease are easiest to extract.
Brush your teeth to make sure any extra food particles are out of the way. If you are not able to do this, swish water in your mouth and spit it back out a few times.
Grasp the tooth by using a small square of gauze. Pull firmly. If the tooth does not come out fairly quickly, you may want to stop this process and seek a dentist's help. Continuing to pull on a firmly embedded tooth may aggravate it and cause you a considerable amount of pain.
Rinse and spit a few more times once the tooth is out. Hold a clean piece of gauze next to the gum where the tooth came out for a few minutes to help stop the bleeding. If the bleeding continues, is very heavy, or if you have significant pain, call a dentist. Otherwise, you can treat the soreness with over-the-counter medication.
Monitor your mouth and body for signs of infection. If you notice redness and swelling at the site of extraction, if there is a foul smell or pus in or near the tooth cavity or if you generally feel bad and have a fever, call a dentist. If infection begins, make sure you receive any necessary antibiotics so your condition doesn't worsen.
Tips and warnings
- Warning: Most dentists advise strongly against pulling your own teeth or the teeth of others due to the chances of complications.
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- Chicago Dental Society. (n.d.) "What to Do if Your Child Has a Loose Baby Tooth." Retrieved May 27, 2009, from Dentistry website: http://www.dentistry.com/articles/What_to_Do_if_Your_Child_Has_a_Loose_Baby_Tooth.aspx.
- Editorial Staff. (n.d.) "Mouth and Teeth: How to Keep Them Healthy." Retrieved May 29, 2009, from Family Doctor website: http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/healthy/prevention/100.printerview.html.