Oral SurgerySouth San Francisco Oral Surgery
If you are in need of oral surgery, call (650) 588-8000 to schedule an appointment with our South San Francisco, CA dental office. At Sonia R. Mendez, DDS, we can provide you with a recommendation for an oral surgeon to help you to maintain or restore your oral health. When it comes to dentistry, only certain dentists perform surgical procedures. Whether you are looking for a new dentist or are currently under the care of one and need more intensive procedures, we welcome your call. We can examine your teeth, give you an opinion regarding whether or not you need surgery, what procedure will benefit you, and what you can expect from the process. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need in order to feel prepared and comfortable. In the meantime, here are a few frequently asked questions we hear in our South San Francisco dentist office.
Why do people get oral surgery?
There are three main reasons that a surgical procedure could be necessary. The first is your health. Tooth decay is incredibly common, and if you receive regular dental care, it is easy to catch and treat before it causes discomfort or spreads. Unfortunately, too many people do not visit the dentist on a regular basis, and this can allow infections to set in. Occasionally, the decay becomes so bad, the tooth has to be removed. Other times, it can be saved with a root canal, but regardless, immediate dental care is necessary to stop the discomfort. It may also be necessary for us to perform oral surgery to correct a problem with your gums. If you have gum disease and suffer from gum recession, you could need a surgical gum graft, for example.
The second reason we perform oral surgery is to remove wisdom teeth. While they do not always pose an immediate health risk, they can grow in impacted and cause discomfort. Removing them can prevent future infections and stop your wisdom teeth from pushing your other teeth forward.
Q & A
Is oral surgery used with orthodontics?
Yes, when an orthodontist straightens teeth, one of the issues they address is overcrowding. There are certain procedures that can create space in the mouth, and one of them is to extract teeth. While not always necessary, some orthodontists will make a recommendation to have one or several teeth removed as part of the treatment process. An orthodontist is also concerned about jaw alignment. Overbites and underbites can often be treated non-invasively. However, in severe cases, oral surgery is necessary to change the position of the jaw. Whether or not you will need oral surgery as part of your orthodontic treatment is something to discuss during your initial consultation.
How do I prepare for oral surgery?
We believe in patient education and will go over the procedure with you step by step. Since each patient and surgery is unique, our overview here is more generic in nature, and we will take time with you individually before making a recommendation. Typically, however, you will want to avoid eating food for a few hours (possibly starting the night before). This is standard protocol when receiving anesthesia. We also recommend that you purchase some ice packs and place them in the freezer. You should plan ahead and buy soft foods, plenty of water, and anything you need to relax and stay comfortable, which should certainly include ibuprofen.
What is the recovery like from oral surgery?
This really depends on the type of surgery being performed. As a general rule, you can expect there to be some level of bleeding that is temporary and can be controlled with the gauze that they give you. You can also expect there to be swelling. This is where most of the discomfort comes from. To control it, you will want to place an icepack on your face for 15 minutes at a time, rest for 15 minutes and then use it again. Just be careful not to irritate your skin, and use a light cloth if you need to. Simultaneously, you should use ibuprofen to keep the swelling and discomfort at minimum. The ice is typically only used for a day or two where the ibuprofen may be needed for a week or so. At Sonia R. Mendez, DDS, we may also give you antibiotics to take in order to prevent an infection. When it comes to food, you will want to stick with things that are soft and either do not require chewing (like soup) or can be chewed very easily (like steamed vegetables). Buying these items ahead of time will make your recovery easier. Just remember to take it easy and not to push yourself. It is best to follow our instructions than to risk irritating your surgical site.
To find out if you need oral surgery recommendation or to discuss a surgical procedure in greater detail, call (650) 588-8000 and schedule a consultation. We will be happy to answer any questions you have and set you on the road to surgery and a full recovery. Our offices are conveniently located in South San Francisco, CA, and we are currently accepting new patients.
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