tooth root fragment left after extraction

If you recently had a tooth extraction, and tooth root was left behind, call our team at Best Dental. Leftover tooth fragments can cause dental infections and a myriad of other problems if they are not properly removed. Our Houston dental office provides oral surgery options to remove the leftover tooth and relieve any pain or infection that you may have.

Why was there tooth left after the dental extraction?

There are a variety of reasons why some dentists leave tooth fragments behind after a tooth extraction.

  1. The main reason is usually inexperience of the dentist to remove a tooth especially if the dental crown portion of the tooth breaks off. Teeth that need to be removed with larger cavities tend to breakdown leaving the roots embedded underneath the gums. Unless the dentist is highly skilled, he or she will not be able to retrieve and remove the leftover tooth roots. This can lead to dental infections among other oral health and systemic problems if not treated immediately.
  2. The second reason that tooth fragments are left behind is if the leftover root fragment is located near a nerve. Sometimes teeth are closely associated with nerves that run through our jawbone. Retrieving these leftover fragments may lead to nerve damage that may end up being permanent throughout one’s life. Analgesia, Paresthesia, and a host of other nerve issues may come of this, and hence the dentists a lot of times leave these tooth fragments in place if they are too risky to remove.

tooth root fragment removal

What medical concerns can leftover tooth fragments cause?

The main effect of tooth fragments that are left in place are dental infections. Bacteria can cause abscesses and swellings in and around the fragments which can lead to systemic problems such as Ludwig’s angina. Although this condition is rare, leftover wisdom teeth fragments have been known to cause this condition leading to hospitalization of patients.

My dentist has told me it’s a bone spicule, what does this mean?

A lot of times patients mistake tooth fragments such as the root for bone tissue. After a tooth is removed bone forms into the area where the tooth was removed. In some patients extra bone forms in the area, and some of the bone sticks out of the gum tissue. This is known as a bone spicule. A lot of times, the spicule heals and dissolves on its own, but in some cases your dentist or surgeon has to remove it.

bone spicule

What does your dental office charge to remove leftover teeth fragments?

At Best Dental, we charge $200 to remove leftover tooth fragments. Of course, our doctors would evaluate your dental x-rays and perform a thorough intraoral exam to determine the right protocol for your case.

Will Dental Insurance cover the removal of leftover tooth fragments?

Unless there is a formal complaint by the patient to the insurance carrier, most fragments are not covered by dental insurance.

What is the procedure to remove my tooth fragment?

  1. Local anesthetic is applied
  2. Your gum tissue where the leftover tooth is reflected.
  3. Some bone around the tooth fragment may need to be removed with a dental handpiece
  4. The fragment is removed with dental instruments
  5. The area is irrigated and a gut suture is placed afterwards

Leftover tooth root fragments can cause a lot of problems if not treated accordingly. If you have had a tooth removed, and your dentist left a piece of tooth root fragment, contact our Houston dental office today. We look forward to helping you resolve your issue as soon as possible!