Most patients now prefer to save a tooth rather than have it extracted when the tooth hurts. The alternative to having a tooth extracted may be a root canal and a crown. Dentists know that an extraction is actually a much more traumatic procedure for the patient than a root canal (see root canal treatment in this pull down menu). That having been said, a tooth extraction may be the best alternative when a tooth is hurting. Also, sometimes teeth need to be extracted for orthodontic reasons, or because they are so broken down they cannot be restored. Another reason teeth may have to be extracted is that gum disease may be so advanced that one or more teeth have to be extracted.
If you call our office for an emergency extraction, we will try to get you in the day you call. Depending on our schedule the day we see you and depending on the complexity of the extraction, we may refer you to an oral surgery practice for the extraction after we have taken an x-ray and discussed other possible options with you. If we refer you to an oral surgery practice, we will call to make the appointment and give you a prescription for pain medication and perhaps an antibiotic if you will not be seen by the oral surgery practice that same day. The oral surgery practice may offer you I.V. sedation (twilight sleep) and local anesthesia as an option for the extraction, or just local anesthesia.
We do extractions in our practice also, even emergency extractions, but we also refer many extractions to oral surgeons or periodontists. Dr. Clepper generally uses I.V. sedation only to place dental implants or to extract teeth and place dental implants at the same time.