What Oral Surgeons Do

Dental assistant smiling at camera

There are many people who work in dentistry, but that does not mean they all do the same things. For example, an oral surgeon, or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, is different than a dental surgeon. An oral surgeon completes four to six more years of training, and therefore has a wider range of specific skills. They can restore or repair not just teeth, but jaws and mouths, too.

Here is a list of some of the procedures an oral surgeon in Northridge is able to perform:

• Tooth removal: If you have had your wisdom teeth removed, chances are it was done by an oral surgeon.

• Jaw surgery: Oral surgeons can help to fix jaw realignment issues, or TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction)

• Birth defect corrections: For example, cleft lips or pallets.

• Facial reconstruction: This may be needed after an accident that changes the look of your face or affects your dental health.

• Dental implants: If you have a missing tooth, or a tooth that is severely damaged, an oral surgeon is the one that will perform the actual surgical aspect of the implant process, before you return to your general Northridge dentist.

• Remove benign tumors, cysts, or work on cases involving oral cancer.


When is Oral Surgery an Option?


Hearing the term “oral surgery” may conjure up some scary images in your mind, but some conditions and dental issues can be best managed through surgical interventions. The reality of oral surgery is that most procedures are performed right in our office, where we take every possible precaution to ensure your comfort and safety. Most patients heal quickly and are back to their normal routine shortly after the surgery, though.

Our Northridge dentist may recommend oral surgery if you:

• Have impacted teeth
• Need to have your wisdom teeth extracted
• Are a candidate for dental implants
• Have advanced periodontitis
• Have TMJ disorder
• Have a badly decayed or diseased tooth

Oral surgery may also be needed if you have a malignancy, sleep apnea or certain severe bite abnormalities. Most procedures are performed using local anesthetic to ensure that you feel nothing but relaxed while the procedure is being done. Sedation is available to help you feel deeply relaxed during the surgery, also. Some patients may need other types of anesthesia depending on their surgical needs.

After your procedure, we will provide you with complete aftercare instructions. These instructions are designed to help you avoid potential complications and facilitate healing. We may also prescribe antibiotics or pain medicine. Call us today to learn more about oral surgery or to schedule an appointment with our expert in oral surgery in Northridge.

When Oral Surgery is the Best Option

Oral surgery can sound scary, especially if you are one of the millions of Americans who struggle with dental anxiety. While most dental problems can be treated with conservative, non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures, some issues may only be addressed through dental surgery.

Our dentist may recommend oral surgery if:

1. You have an impacted wisdom tooth.
Wisdom teeth and other teeth can become impacted if there is insufficient room in the jaw to accommodate them or if they are badly positioned. The tooth can become trapped in the jaw and gum tissue, and this can cause swelling, inflammation, pain and eventually infection. Surgery may be needed to remove the impacted tooth.

2. You have periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease can destroy the gum and bone tissue and cause tooth loss. Bone and soft tissue grafts can restore the lost tissue and stimulate your body to produce healthy new tissue.

3. You are a candidate for dental implants.
Implants are placed during a surgical procedure. They offer a permanent, attractive alternative to more conventional restorations, such as dental bridges or dentures.

Dental surgery can be performed under local anesthesia with or without dental sedation, depending on your needs. In some cases, general anesthesia may be recommended, though. Call us today to learn more or to schedule an appointment with our oral surgeon in Long Beach.