What is Oral Surgery?

If you’re like most people, you may find it incredibly challenging to resist the urge to panic when your dentist mentions “oral surgery.” After all, the thought of undergoing a painful and expensive procedure can be unnerving.  However, the truth is that most surgical procedures are completed on an outpatient basis, and you should be able to resume your normal activities within a couple of days.

Some examples of oral surgical procedures involve the extraction of an impacted wisdom tooth, the placement of dental implants, root canal treatments, and bone or gum graft. If your case requires the expertise of a highly-trained specialist, your dentist may recommend that you visit an oral surgeon so that you can receive the best care possible.

Are you apprehensive about a referral to an oral surgeon? It’s best to learn more about your upcoming surgical procedure and why you need it.

Answers to the Most Common Questions About Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

What Is Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery?

This refers to any surgical procedure that’s performed on your teeth, gums, the tissues of your mouth, jaw, head, or face. These surgeries are usually performed by a dental specialist.

What Are the Most Common Types of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery?

Impacted Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Since the third molars usually come through at a more mature age (between the ages of 17 and 21), they’re usually referred to as wisdom teeth. When these emerge correctly, keeping them won’t be an issue. However, if they become trapped or impacted they need to be removed.

If left untreated, impacted wisdom teeth cause pain and misalignment of your other teeth. What’s more, they can also contribute to tooth decay and gum disease development because food particles tend to become trapped around them.

Sleep Apnea Treatment

Sleep apnea refers to a potentially serious sleep disorder that requires immediate treatment. This is characterized by breathing in stops and starts, gasping for air, and loud snoring.  A person who has it may still feel tired even after getting a full night’s sleep, suffer headaches, wake up with a dry mouth or a sore throat, or wake up several times a night to urinate.

Although several options are available for treating sleep apnea such as using a special machine or a mouth guard, some cases may require surgery. The oral surgeon removes excess tissue from the back of the patient’s mouth to clear their airway and significantly reduce the symptoms.

Dental Implant Surgery

Dental implants serve as replacements for the roots of missing teeth. These surgical components are biocompatible titanium posts that provide a strong foundation for fixed or removable artificial teeth. During a dental implant procedure, each implant is securely placed in the tooth sockets and the jawbone.

As soon as they heal, the dental surgeon screws the artificial teeth onto these metal posts to produce a long-lasting teeth replacement solution that looks, feels, and functions like natural teeth.

Reconstructive and Jaw Surgery

These surgical procedures are performed by maxillofacial surgeons who are highly trained to diagnose issues with jaw alignment and injuries that require surgical intervention. Besides improving the patient’s appearance, reconstructive and jaw surgery also relieves pain and discomfort. Additionally, it also restores their ability to chew their favorite foods properly.

What Should I Expect If I Have an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery?

Before having your surgery, you’ll be provided with a list of instructions about what you have to do, the arrangements that you’ll have to make for your care, and the medications you’ll have to take.

If the surgery requires the use of general anesthesia, you’ll be asked to avoid consuming any food or drink starting the night before your appointment. If this is the case, your procedure will be scheduled early in the morning. You’ll also be instructed to have a relative or a friend drive you to and from the dentist’s office.

Your oral surgeon is willing to address your questions or concerns about your surgery and your recovery period. You may be required to take a day or two off work, take antibiotics and pain relief medications for a few days following the procedure. Additionally, you’ll be advised to avoid strenuous activity and certain types of foods and beverages while you’re on your way to recovery.

What Should I Eat After the Surgery?

It’s best to eat soft foods at room temperature for several days following your surgical procedure. Anything that needs to be consumed through a straw should be avoided. You’ll also have to steer clear of foods that are hard, chewy, or crunchy.

The Experts in Oral Surgery

Are you experiencing problems with your teeth, gums, or jaw? Don’t hesitate to request an appointment with the team of experts at Bayshore Dental today.

We’re here to provide you with high-quality dental care in a safe, comfortable, and friendly atmosphere. The professional dental care you’ll receive will help you achieve the kind of smile that you can be truly proud of.

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