Oral surgery is a broad term that includes a wide range of procedures performed on your teeth, gums, jaw, or other associated facial structures. These surgeries can be used to address everything from relatively common dental issues such as missing or broken teeth to conditions such as sleep apnea or oral cancer.
The following oral surgeries are some of the most common and together represent the majority of oral surgeries performed.
This is the single most common form of oral surgery and can be helpful when faced with a range of conditions such as tooth decay, impacted teeth, gum disease, or issues with wisdom teeth. It may also be necessary following significant dental trauma or to prepare the mouth for dentures.
Removing an infected or damaged tooth can help to protect the health of your remaining teeth and your gums by preventing harmful bacteria from spreading in your mouth whilst in many cases providing quick and long-lasting relief from pain.
Root canals offer a way to deal with severely infected or damaged teeth without the need for extraction. During this procedure, the soft tissue inside your tooth, known as the pulp, is removed along with any bacteria inside the tooth. Although this can make the tooth more fragile, it can allow some teeth that would otherwise have to be removed to be saved.
During an apicoectomy, sometimes referred to as a root-end resection, the end of the tooth root is removed. This allows inflamed tissue at the end of the root to be removed while preserving the rest of the tooth. This is sometimes performed after a root canal but can also be very effective on its own depending on the overall condition of the tooth.
Dental implants are an option for replacing natural teeth in cases of tooth loss or severe damage and decay. A metal post is inserted into the jawbone, replicating the root your tooth would have, with a crown added later once the jaw and gums have healed around the post. Dental implants may be used to replace some or all of the teeth.
This oral operation replaces lost tissue in your jawbone, restoring volume and density. This may be required if the jawbone has been damaged as a result of gum disease. It is also sometimes necessary if teeth are missing or have been replaced by implants, as it is stimulation from the root of the tooth that causes the body to send nutrients to the bone.
Also known as periodontal surgery, this procedure involves temporarily separating the gums from the teeth so that the roots of the teeth can be cleaned. This allows plaque and bacteria to be thoroughly removed before the gum tissue is replaced and sutured into place.
A gum graft involves donor tissue, which may come from the roof of the patient’s mouth or from a registered tissue bank, being grafted onto the gums. This can help to address receding gums, which usually occur as a result of gum disease.
Corrective jaw surgery is used to address skeletal abnormalities in the jawbone. Also known as orthognathic surgery, it can be used to correct misalignment of the jaws and teeth.
Cleft lip and cleft palate refer to conditions where a baby is born with an opening on the roof of their mouth or their upper lip. In some cases, a baby is born with both conditions. Fortunately, oral surgery is highly effective at treating both issues, allowing a person born with them to eat normally and develop regular speaking patterns.
Sleep apnea is a condition that causes breathing to stop intermittently during sleep. The most common form of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea, is caused by tissue in the back of the throat blocking your airways as you sleep.
Although it is most commonly treated using a CPAP machine, which assists your breathing while you sleep, or by using a device to hold the airways open while the person sleeps, they are not always effective. In those cases, sleep apnea surgery can be a good option.
If you’re scheduled for oral surgery, a qualified dental professional familiar with your individual circumstances will be best to help clear up any questions or concerns you may have. Don’t hesitate to ask your dental professional any questions about the procedure or the practicalities surrounding it.
Alternatively, if you have issues that you aren’t sure how to address or are looking for a welcoming and professional dental practice to take care of your dental and oral surgery needs, your dentist in Rolla (Wedgewood Dental) could be the perfect choice for you. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and find out more about how we can help.
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