Sometimes, when you come to an oral surgeon for dental implants, you have to get one or more teeth extracted. Wondering if you may face that possibility? Curious about why oral surgeons need to do tooth removal before dental implants? Here’s a look at some of the reasons.

Rotten Tooth

If a tooth has a small cavity, a filling can easily fix the issue, but in contrast, when a tooth has extensive decay that goes into the root, you usually need a root canal. In some cases, the decay is so severe that even a root canal can’t help and the tooth needs to be extracted. If you have any teeth in this condition, your oral surgeon may recommend tooth removal followed by a new implant.

Injured Tooth

In other cases, your oral surgeon may recommend tooth removal because your tooth is injured. Typically, this happens due to blunt force trauma to the face or because you fall and hit your tooth. In this situation, the tooth may die. The nerves may stop working, and the tooth may appear gray or black. Again, in this situation, your doctor may recommend tooth removal followed by a dental implant.

Bone Graft Consideration

Dental implants consist of a prosthetic root that goes below the gum line into your jaw bone and a cap or crown that sits above the gum line, creating the look of a beautiful, natural tooth. However, this process can only work if the oral surgeon has healthy jaw bone to put the dental implant into. If you don’t have healthy jaw bone for any reason, your dentist will likely suggest a bone graft. That involves moving healthy bone from one part of your body to your jaw bone. In some cases, your dentist may need to extract a tooth to make way for the bone graft.

Implant Timing

Note that when you lose a tooth, your jaw bone will eventually start to deteriorate. To preserve the integrity of your smile, you should try to get your dental implant as soon as possible after you lose the tooth. Unfortunately, that isn’t always possible, and if you don’t get the implant right away, you may lose bone structure, need a bone graft, and potentially face a tooth removal for the reasons explained above.

Positioning

In some cases, your oral surgeon may just need to do tooth removal due to the position of the tooth. To explain, imagine a situation where you have lost all the teeth in one arch of your mouth, the oral surgeon wants to put in a bridge anchored by implants on each side, but there’s a single tooth left in the middle of the arch. This situation may call for tooth removal.

Keep in mind that these are just guidelines. Every tooth and every person is unique. If you want to talk more about dental implants and find out if you need tooth removal, contact us directly to set up a consultation. At Greater Atlanta Oral and Facial Surgery, our oral surgeons are world renowned for being dental experts, we have the latest technology to guide the treatment, and we would love to help you reclaim your beautiful smile.