Many patients wonder: what are your options after having a tooth pulled? A tooth extraction is the medical term for having a tooth pulled. Your dentist may suggest an extraction if a tooth is damaged beyond repair. They may also suggest removing teeth if there isn’t enough room in your mouth for all of your teeth to be appropriately straightened.

What Are Your Options After Having a Tooth Pulled?

Regardless of the circumstances, you need to carefully consider what steps are going to be taken once the offending tooth is removed. 

For Orthodontic Extractions

If you have extractions to make room for routine orthodontic work, you don’t have to worry as much about the aftermath. Your dentist will ensure that the gum is appropriately sealed to prevent infection. Once your dentist has cleared you, you can essentially forget about the extraction afterwards. While your teeth are being straightened, your orthodontist will make sure any gaps are closed, giving your teeth and jaw the support they need. 

For Medically Necessary Extractions

However, if you need a tooth removed due to damage, then the story is a little more complicated. For one, your dentist isn’t choosing which tooth is removed and no other natural tooth will be taking its place. That means that your best periodontist Los Angeles has at L.A. Wilshire Periodontics will need to find a way to replace the tooth to preserve the integrity of the jaw and surrounding teeth. 

You see, the gap of a missing tooth isn’t just unsightly. It’s a serious problem for your long-term health. Every time your teeth come into contact with one another while you talk or chew, the bone in the surrounding teeth and jawbone are encouraged to remodel. Put into simple terms, it encourages your body to reabsorb aging bone tissue to make room for new bone. Without that pressure, the jawbone ceases to replace old bone with new, and the teeth on either side and above the extraction site are structurally weakened. 

The Best Option for Replacing a Missing Tooth

There are several temporary options for replacing a missing tooth, but none of them can sufficiently replicate the process necessary to the preservation of your jaw. The only permanent option is dental implants Los Angeles. And they are one of the best options after having a tooth pulled. These prosthetic teeth are typically made of ceramic, allowing them to replicate the look of a natural tooth. The visible portion of the implant is connected to a metal post drilled directly into the jawbone. It may sound unpleasant, but the physical connection between the prosthetic tooth and your jaw is what makes a dental implant the best option for your long-term health. However, this fix isn’t achieved overnight. 

The Process of Receiving a Dental Implant

It can take anywhere from six weeks to nine months to complete the process of placing a dental implant. The primary difference is if you need a bone graft to strengthen the jawbone beforehand. Your age and lifestyle habits may also increase the necessary healing period. So you will need to discuss the process with your periodontist to get a personalized estimate. 

Generally speaking, a bone graft and dental implant are placed in three or four visits. But it depends on when the connection between the post and prosthetic tooth is placed. Your periodontist will usually refer to this connecting piece as the abutment. If your dentist doesn’t place the abutment during a separate office visit, then you can expect the process to look something like this:

First Appointment: 

Your periodontist may need to take x-rays to determine the current state of your jawbone. If the tooth has been missing for some time, then you will likely require a bone graft. They will look at your x-ray to tell for sure. At this stage, they may also take impressions.

Second Appointment:

If you require a bone graft, your dentist will have to surgically place a piece of synthetic bone to encourage remodeling around the graft. It can take between 4 to 6 months for the bone graft to become fully integrated into new bone. If you smoke or are over the age of 60, you can expect the healing process to lean towards the six-month range.

Third Appointment:

Once the bone graft has fully healed, your periodontist will use a specialized drill to place the post of the implant into your jaw bone. Then you have to wait for the jaw bone to grow around the post, securing its placement. This can also take several months. So your specialist may choose to place the abutment and fill the gap with a temporary denture. 

Fourth Appointment:

Once your periodontist has certified that the bone has fully incorporated the post, they will place your prosthetic tooth.


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Los Angeles, CA 90017
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