Tooth Extractions in Bethesda & Chevy Chase, MD

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While experienced dentist Dr. Despina Markogiannakis makes every effort to save and preserve your natural teeth, there are cases in which a tooth or teeth may need to be extracted. A simple extraction removes a tooth that is visible above the gumline. This is typically used for a tooth that is damaged or decayed beyond repair while a surgical extraction removes a tooth that has not erupted above the gumline. Whatever the reason for getting a tooth extraction at Smiles of Chevy Chase, our team will treat you with the best care. Our Chevy Chase, MD office performs simple tooth extractions on patients and offers many different sedation techniques, like nitrous oxide, The Wand anesthesia, and oral-conscious sedation, allowing you to remain calm and comfortable during your procedure. Contact our team for more information or to schedule an exam with Dr. Markogiannakis to improve your oral health.

The Benefits of Tooth Extraction

While the goal of modern dentistry is to help you keep your natural teeth, a tooth may sometimes become too damaged or infected to save. In cases such as these, extraction is necessary and beneficial. At Smiles of Chevy Chase, Dr. Markogiannakis provides simple, painless tooth extractions to preserve your oral health, increase orthodontic treatment efficiency, and prepare you for restorative options.

What Is Tooth Extraction?

Tooth extraction is the process of extracting, or removing, a tooth from your mouth. While you may need a tooth extracted because it is too damaged to save, tooth extraction can also prepare your mouth for restorative options such as implants, bridges, and dentures. Extraction also helps permanent teeth erupt when baby teeth are blocking them, and makes orthodontic treatments like Invisalign® more effective by giving teeth room to move.

What To Expect From Tooth Extraction

Before Dr. Markogiannakis extracts any of your teeth, she’ll thoroughly examine your mouth during a routine consultation and make sure that all other options have been exhausted. She’ll ask you about your oral health goals, review your medical history, and suggest restorative options that you may qualify for.

Once you’ve both decided that tooth extraction is the best course of action, we’ll schedule your next appointment. Dr. Markogiannakis may also prescribe an antibiotic for you to take before and after the procedure. Prescription of antibiotics depends on a number of factors, including:

  • Current infection
  • Weakened immune system
  • Specific medical conditions
  • Extended procedure

If Dr. Markogiannakis has prescribed antibiotics, be sure to take them as directed to avoid complications.

Before Dr. Markogiannakis performs the extraction, we’ll use a local anesthetic to numb the area around the tooth that’s being extracted. Depending on the extent of the procedure, we may also use sedation to help keep you relaxed and make the procedure go more smoothly. Once we’ve ensured your anesthetic and any sedative we may use is working properly, Dr. Markogiannakis will begin the extraction procedure.

For simple tooth extraction, Dr. Markogiannakis will loosen the tooth with a special device known as an elevator before removing the tooth. In some cases, the tooth may need to be broken into smaller pieces before it can be removed. While time frames for extraction vary based on factors such as the damage to the tooth, a simple extraction for one tooth may take as little as three to fifteen minutes.

If you’re having a restoration installed, there will be more steps involved after the tooth has been successfully extracted. Once the procedure is complete, you’ll return home to begin the recovery process. Depending on the sedation used during your extraction, you may need to have a responsible adult drive you home.

Tooth Extraction Recovery

Depending on the complexity of your extraction process and factors such as your body’s unique physiology, your recovery process will vary. However, there are guidelines you’ll need to follow post-procedure in order to make a full recovery.

Post-procedure, Dr. Markogiannakis will discuss the recovery process with you and give you specific care instructions to follow. While your mouth heals, you should avoid smoking, using straws, and spitting. Since your mouth will be swollen after extraction, Dr. Markogiannakis recommends using cold compresses and over-the-counter pain medication. If she’s written a prescription for pain relievers or antibiotics, be sure to use them as directed.

Expect to return to Smiles of Chevy Chase for follow-up appointments as directed by Dr. Markogiannakis. You’ll need to see Dr. Markogiannakis for follow-up visits to ensure your healing process is going smoothly and so she can monitor your oral health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is tooth extraction covered by insurance?


Tooth extraction is usually covered by dental insurance, but your sedation method may or may not be fully covered. Before your procedure, we will contact your insurance company to get the most out of your specific coverage and estimate your costs. If you don't have dental insurance, Dr. Markogiannakis can talk to you about the many payment methods we accept along with information about medical financing.


What’s the difference between simple tooth extraction and surgical tooth extraction?

Simple tooth extraction involves removing teeth that can be seen inside the mouth. Surgical extraction is used for teeth that cannot be seen with the naked eye, like impacted or wisdom teeth. Extracting these teeth requires making surgical incisions into the gums. If you require a surgical extraction, Dr. Markogiannakis will refer you to a local oral surgeon so the tooth can be taken care of.


What kind of sedation methods can be used during extraction?


At Smiles of Chevy Chase, we offer many different options for sedation including nitrous oxide, The Wand anesthesia, and oral conscious sedation. Be sure to mention sedation to Dr. Markogiannakis during your consultation. She can choose a sedation option tailored to fit your unique needs based on your medical history, medication use, allergies, and any phobia or anxiety you may experience at the dentist’s office.


If I choose a restoration, can I have it installed/made the same day as my extraction?


When you can have a restoration installed after extraction depends on a number of factors such as the kind of restoration you’ve chosen, whether or not you’ve opted for sedation, the complexity of the procedure, and your body’s unique physiology. Dr. Markogiannakis will let you know the specifics of installing restoration options like bridges and implants during your consultation.


Simple Tooth Extraction Can Save Your Smile


While you may not feel positive about having a tooth removed, tooth extraction can help you maintain and enhance your oral health by stopping the spread of infection and preserving the integrity of your other teeth. Using simple tooth extractions, Dr. Markogiannakis can prepare your smile for restoration options and increase the effectiveness of orthodontic treatments. Rest assured, at Smiles of Chevy Chase, your simple tooth extraction will be comfortable and quick.

To learn more about simple tooth extractions or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Markogiannakis, contact Smiles of Chevy Chase at 301-652-0656. You can also schedule an appointment by submitting a contact form and a friendly team member will get back to you to answer any questions.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.