Oral surgery consists of a variety of surgical procedures dentists perform to treat many diseases, injuries, and defects in the jaws and the hard and soft tissues of the mouth. Oral surgery addresses a number of dental conditions; the three most common dental conditions requiring oral surgery are:
- Impacted Teeth
- Tooth Loss
- TMJ Disorders
Impacted teeth are wisdom teeth, or third molars, that have failed to fully emerge through the gum line or emerge in proper alignment. As the last set of teeth to develop, wisdom teeth do not always have enough room in the jaw to enter the mouth correctly, and inadequate amount of room in the jaw can leave the teeth trapped or impacted between the jawbone and the gum tissue. Impacted wisdom teeth can have several harmful effects on the mouth, including swelling, pain, and infection, and can even cause permanent damage to the teeth, gums, and bones that surround them. Occasionally, wisdom teeth can disrupt sections of the jaw by causing the formation of cysts or tumors. When wisdom teeth are impacted, or even the other types of teeth that can experience the same difficulties, such as the cuspids and bicuspids, the dentists at Village Dental usually recommend having these teeth removed.
Accidents or infections can lead to tooth loss at any point in life, and oral surgery can remedy some of these unfavorable situations by providing dental implants. As alternatives to bridges or dentures, dental implants are tooth root substitutes that can be surgically anchored into the jawbone and attached to artificial teeth in order to stabilize them. Village Dental is able to determine which patients qualify for dental implants by analyzing bone density, bone levels, susceptibility to infection, and willingness to maintain good oral hygiene practices.
The temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, is the small joint in front of the ear where the skull and lower jaw connect, and the dysfunction of this joint can cause consistent headaches and facial pain. Several treatment options are available for patients who suffer from TMJ disorders. In most cases, TMJ can be treated conservatively by using a night or tooth guard. These appliances create an ideal bite and help to eliminate the pain that can result from TMJ problems. Another option for advanced cases in which the diagnosis indicates a specific problem in the joint is oral surgery.
Other Conditions Oral Surgery Can Treat
- Denture Fit: Oral surgery can improve the fit of dentures for both first-time and long-term denture wearers. Oral surgery can correct irregularities in the jaw before dentures are created in order to ensure a better fit. It can also add a bone graft to areas of the jaw where the supporting bone has deteriorated and little bone remains from wearing dentures for an extended period of time.
- Facial Injury Repair: Fractured jaws and broken facial bones can be repaired with oral surgery.
- Lesion Removal and biopsy: With oral surgery, a small sample of an abnormal growth or tissue can be sent to a laboratory for testing and identification.
- Facial Infections: The presence of pain and swelling in the jaw, face, or neck may reveal an infection, and without rapid and effective treatment, these infections can grow into life-threatening emergencies.
Our Village Dental Care Approach to Oral Surgery
At Village Dental, we favor the safety of an effective oral sedation to promote relaxation over more risky IV sedation. Unless a patient wishes to be given general anesthesia for surgical procedures, we are able to perform almost all of the surgical procedures needed by our patients in our office, saving our patients the inconvenience of traveling to an unfamiliar office for these procedures. For those patients who are nervous about their treatment, we provide prescription medication to help the patient relax along with cable television and a wide selection of movie choices for the patient to view. Our Five Star Service provides a soothing, comfortable environment for any oral surgery. Our Village Dental Care approach makes the process as smooth as possible.