An Overview of Tooth Extraction Tools

Posted on: 23 November 2016

If you are like many people, you may be uncomfortable with tooth extraction because you are unsure about the process that is used to remove teeth. Tooth extraction is a safe and virtually painless procedure that, in most cases, requires no drilling or invasive incision. Here is an overview of the most common tools that are used to remove teeth to give you more peace of mind about the extraction process.


Forceps are small pliers that are specially designed for removing teeth. There are two primary categories of forceps that will be used, depending on the location of the tooth that needs to be removed.

Maxillary forceps are used for extracting teeth in the upper jaw. The jaws of these forceps are curved to allow the dentist to grip the upper teeth in the back of the mouth more easily. Mandibular forceps are straight and are usually shorter than maxillary forceps. Mandibular forceps are designed for removing teeth from your lower jaw.

Your dentist will have different sets of maxillary and mandibular forceps for removing specific teeth. Forceps that are meant to remove molars will have jaws that are shaped differently than those designed to remove incisors. This allows the forceps to grip tightly by conforming to the shape of the tooth exactly. After injecting local anesthesia and gripping the tooth to be removed with forceps, your dentist will slowly rock it back and forth to widen the dental socket and easily pull out the tooth.

Dental Elevators

Dental elevators are small lever tools that resemble screwdrivers. These tools are typically used when a tooth cannot be removed with forceps alone, such as when the tooth has broken off near the gum line. Your dentist will insert the narrow tip of the dental elevator between the tooth and gums, and slowly rock it near the root of the tooth to loosen it. Like forceps, dental elevators will vary in size and shape depending on where they need to be used in the mouth.

Dental elevators can also be used to remove small pieces of the tooth root that may break off in the socket when extracting the tooth. Large pieces of the root are usually extracted using a cryers elevator, a specialized elevator with a triangular tip. Small shards of the tooth root are removed with a tool known as an apex elevator that has a very narrow, pick-like tip.

Tooth extraction is a simple procedure that can usually be performed with very basic tools. Talk with an endodontist like those at Renovo Endodontic Studio if you are experiencing chronic tooth pain to determine if you are in need of a tooth extraction.