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    I have a dental extraction coming up. What should I know and expect?

    While wisdom teeth are one of the most common reasons for dental extraction treatment at Oral & Facial Surgery Group, other teeth sometimes need to be removed for different reasons. We sat down with our own Dr. Maneesh Mohan to talk about why a tooth might need to be removed, and what to expect during the procedure. 

    1. Why might a tooth extraction be needed? And, what are the benefits?

    There are multiple reasons why a tooth is removed. The most common reason is because the tooth is compromised. It may be infected or symptomatic (painful). Unfortunately, that’s not the only reason we remove teeth. Sometimes we proactively remove teeth for orthodontic reasons, such as overcrowding. We also proactively remove wisdom teeth to prevent future damage to the other teeth, bone or tissue surrounding the area.

    1. What happens during a dental extraction?

    From a procedure standpoint we are “loosening” or manipulating the ligaments that hold the tooth within the bone. Once the tooth has “loosened” it can be removed. 

    1. Are there any risks or complications?

    Unfortunately, with any medical or dental procedure there are always risks and potential complications. In general the risks and benefits are weighted against each other. Those details are discussed with the patient in depth. Eventually the patient and surgeon make an educated decision together. In our practices, our surgeon and staff hold safety to be the top priority. Everything else is a close second. 

    1. How should I prepare for the procedure?

    Many patients choose to be sedated. If so, we always give them pre-operative instructions. This includes not eating or drinking anything eight hours before the procedure, dressing comfortably, and bringing a ride to drive them home. As far as mental preparation, that is individually based. If this is your first dental procedure, there may be more apprehension. If you are more seasoned with dental procedures, you may not find it to be as intimidating. We always encourage a consultation prior to any  procedure to ensure the patient has plenty of opportunity to have all their questions answered. A comprehensive consultation usually helps alleviate any unwanted stress.

    1. Will I be awake during the procedure? 

    Based on the patient’s medical history and the complexity of the surgery, sedation may be an option for the patient. A detailed discussion with your surgeon is encouraged to determine if you are a candidate for sedation. If you are not a candidate for sedation, other alternatives might include local anesthesia and/or nitrous oxide gas.

    1. What sedation options are available? Are they safe?

    The most common sedation option is the use of IV sedation. This IV sedation option can be either moderate or deep sedation/general anesthesia. Sedation options are typically very safe. Strict patient guidelines and continuous training for staff are mandatory to maintain safety. Complications typically arise when a patient’s complete medical history is not fully disclosed or clinicians/ staff members are not well trained. Fortunately, the surgeons and staff at Oral & Facial Surgery Group are board certified oral and maxillofacial surgeons and have been extensively trained in anesthesia and office-based sedation. 

    1. What kind of specialized training do the surgeons at Oral & Facial Surgery Group receive to perform dental extraction(s) under sedation?

    The surgeons at Oral & Facial Surgery Group are diplomates of American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (ABOMS). This means they are board certified in the specialty of oral and maxillofacial surgery. They have completed a rigorous head and neck surgery training that comes with advanced anesthesia training. Our anesthesia training follows the guidelines of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS), which is the governing body of oral and maxillofacial surgery throughout the country. We also have state societies that follow the AAOMS guidelines. These state societies maintain and enforce the AAOMS guidelines. Based on the guidelines, each office is  re-evaluated routinely to maintain their anesthesia privileges and status. Also, every surgeon has a continuing education requirement that includes anesthesia update training for licensure renewal. With the requirements by AAOMS, our state requirements and continuing education requirements, our surgeons and staff are highly educated and the offices are fully equipped to keep our patients comfortable and safe during any IV sedation procedure.

    1. Who is in the room during the dental procedure?

    If you are being sedated, the surgeon and two other surgical assistants/nurses are present during the procedure. If local anesthesia is utilized, then only the surgeon and one other person may only be necessary. Because of the degree of complexity and the importance of safety, sedation patients are watched in more detail.

    1. What is the recovery time?

    Recovery time can vary from case to case. Because every patient is unique and requires their own specific plan, the recovery time will vary. It would largely depend on the complexity of the procedure as well as the patient’s medical history. Biology tells us that it always gets worse before it gets better. Typically the first three days after surgery the patients will notice the swelling and discomfort increase until it stabilizes around day four. After it stabilizes, it starts trending back down. Some people bounce back faster than others. It’s important to remember that this is only a general principle and not a hard and fast rule. The principle assumes that nothing has happened to aggravate the surgical site after the procedure.

    1. What should I be watching for during my recovery? 

    Because every procedure and patient is different, it is hard to limit it to a few potential issues. The common stuff you want to be mindful of include unexpected or unexplained  increases in pain, bleeding or swelling.  

    1. Will my primary dentist receive an update about how my procedure went?

    Communication is an important detail in our practices. A post-procedure summary or letter is provided to the primary dentist by Oral & Facial Surgery Group to maintain communication as well as ensuring the continuity of care. 

    Oral & Facial Surgery Group prides itself on safety above all else. We operate under the guiding principles of safety and comfort for all patients. If your dentist has recommended a dental extraction or any other dental procedure, you can feel good about trusting your care to the surgeons at Oral & Facial Surgery Group. Schedule a consultation today!