Do I Need A Tooth Extraction Before Orthodontic Treatment?

At Timock Family Orthodontics, we believe educating our patients on their options to advance their oral health is essential to the treatment process. One of those topics is whether or not you need a tooth extraction before orthodontic treatment. Our team is here to answer your questions about whether removing specific teeth is necessary, the procedure you can expect, and why you might need an extraction.

The Basics of Orthodontic Care

Braces are commonly associated with orthodontic treatment, but many more options today help accomplish the same goals. Dr. Timock’s job as an orthodontist is to help you achieve a perfect smile through various care options. He specializes in realigning teeth and jaws to fix common complications such as bite issues, malocclusion, protruding teeth, and crowding. 

We provide our patients with many treatment options to accommodate a variety of lifestyle and dental needs, including clear, metal, and lingual braces, as well as Invisalign. During your free consultation, Dr. Timock examines your teeth and can give you an idea of what care options will be most effective for aligning your teeth. 

Coming in for your first appointment around age seven allows our team the opportunity to spot any developing issues early on and help you pursue more straightforward care, as your jaw and bones are still malleable at a young age.

Preparing for Your Tooth Extraction Appointment

Understanding the Process

The steps taken during your tooth extraction procedure depend on the kind of tooth our team removes, whether healthy or damaged. If it is the former and has fully erupted past the gum line, the process is quite simple: We use a pair of forceps to loosen the tooth back and forth before it dislodges from place. You can expect a relatively fast recovery.

If it is damaged, unhealthy, or has not quite reached past your gum line, the extraction will require the assistance of an oral surgeon. An oral surgeon will need to cut part of your gum to get a solid grip on your tooth and wiggle it loose. Stitches will be required following the procedure, so your recovery will take longer.  

Any Pain Involved?

While there may be minor discomfort during the procedure, we guarantee you won’t feel any pain. We provide a numbing agent that will prevent you from feeling anything around the tooth, gums, and jawbone. This way, we can get the job done while you can relax. 

Caring For Your Teeth Afterward

The following day after your procedure, there will be some bleeding from the extraction site that needs to form a blood clot for healing to begin. Our team provides you with gauze to bite down and replace as necessary until it stops. The faster it does, the sooner recovery can begin.

Information on how to provide care over the following days and weeks will be provided to you. If you have any questions about these instructions, please feel free to contact our office.

How Soon Can You Get Braces After?

The next step after tooth extraction is beginning your braces treatment, but, as mentioned, there will need to be a healing period beforehand. If your procedure is straightforward, you can expect recovery to be complete within two weeks. However, if you need surgical removal, recovery may take closer to a month to ensure the stitches are completely healed.

After tooth extraction, Dr. Timock can provide you with a specific timeline for your healing and when it is safe to begin braces.

Tooth Extraction

Circumstances Leading to Tooth Removal


If your teeth do not have enough space to move into their proper positions, they may begin crowding. This is the most common reason for tooth extraction. They can overlap each other and angle your teeth out of place, thus causing a domino effect. Extra teeth may need to be removed for the rest to grow appropriately.

Bite Issues or Protruding Teeth

The placement of your teeth affects the positioning of your jaw, and if there is not enough space for your teeth to grow into, you could develop an overbite or underbite. Removing one or two teeth can help negate the need for jaw surgery or other invasive procedures that affect alignment later in life.

Protruding teeth are similar in that they can alter your outward appearance. However, removing certain teeth from the back of your mouth can provide the necessary space for them to grow into their space correctly. This way, Dr. Timock can assist in effectively reaching your ideal smile position.

Damaged Teeth

If a tooth becomes unsalvageable from trauma or other damage, our team will likely recommend you remove it before beginning braces treatment. Leaving this tooth in your mouth can slow down the alignment process, as unhealthy teeth are likely to interrupt movement and increase your time wearing an appliance.

Non-Extractions Solutions

Tooth extraction is not always necessary for effective braces treatment. Depending on your age and specific case, there may be alternatives to this procedure. If removing a tooth can cause more damage than assistance, Dr. Timock may consider turning to the help of a palatal expander. This metal device is placed on your upper jaw and expands over time with a key to slowly widen the area. It provides crowded teeth with the proper space to grow.

This appliance is typically used for younger patients because their bones are still malleable. However, other alternative treatments may be available for your treatment plan. Dr. Timock can share them with you during your free consultation. 

Tooth Extraction

Begin Orthodontic Treatment Today!

Now that you understand more about how tooth extraction relates to your orthodontic health if you believe that is your next step in your oral health journey, we are here to support you! Timock Family Orthodontics provides expert care to Windsor, Fort Collins, and the surrounding communities, serving all your orthodontic needs. Schedule your free consultation with Dr. Timock today and get started on your smile journey!