Why “oral surgery” isn’t as scary as it might sound.

Dental Oral SurgeryNot everyone needs dental oral surgery, but you may be surprised to learn how many people do. Here, we explain the top five reasons why people come to see us and a few types of oral surgery that we commonly conduct.

What is Dental Oral Surgery?

When you imagine dental oral surgery, you may think of a hospital setting, general anesthesia, and a long, drawn-out procedure. If that matches your mental image of oral surgery, then you’ll be surprised to learn that many common dental procedures performed at a dental clinic are actually considered oral surgery.

Below are the five most common procedures that we conduct for people needing oral surgery:

1. Tooth Extraction

Yes, getting your tooth removed at the dentist counts as oral surgery! This is a very common procedure which you might need for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Partially erupted or impacted wisdom teeth
  • A sick tooth that can’t recover from decay, fracture, or trauma
  • An orthodontic treatment plan to address overcrowding

2. Dental Implants

With a 99% success rate and the potential for lifelong use, dental implants are a popular procedure for replacing teeth. Your dentist will place an anchor for the false tooth in your gum, which then fuses with your jawbone to create a solid base for your false tooth.  Although individual reactions may vary, most people report being able to eat normally within a week afterward.

3. Corrective Jaw Surgery

TMJ (Temporomandibular joint pain) may be a cause for jaw surgery. Other common reasons include:

  • Trauma to the jaw
  • Malocclusion (bad bite)
  • Excessive grinding of teeth, causing tooth wear
  • Incorrect jaw position, causing you problems when eating, chewing, or speaking

4. Reconstructive Surgery

This year, more than 49,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cancer. Dentists are trained to detect oral cancer, which is why it’s so important to get your annual checkup. If your dentist identifies something suspicious in your mouth, face, neck, or jaw, a biopsy (another example of oral surgery) will be performed to diagnose the possible disease.

If it turns out you do have oral cancer, after you receive radiation therapy treatment, you will likely require reconstructive surgery. Prosthodontists are specially trained for complex reconstructive procedures. Penn Dental Medicine offers top-of-the-line reconstructive procedures for patients recovering from oral cancer.

5. Sleep Apnea

It is estimated that 22 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, a condition that causes a person to wake up because they temporarily stop breathing during sleep. Sleep apnea interferes with quality of life and sufferers often struggle with chronic fatigue and drowsiness. People suffering from severe sleep apnea can improve their condition with an oral procedure that removes excess tissue from the back of the throat, called Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP).

Dental Oral Surgery You Can Trust

Today’s dental & oral surgery has advanced remarkably from where it was 30 years ago. When they visit us at Penn Dental Medicine, our patients can take comfort in knowing that they will benefit from our evidence-based practices and our adoption of the best technology. Our student doctors are studying at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, and are learning from some of the top dentists in the country.

Many people are understandably anxious about dental oral surgery cost. The good news is that at Penn Dental Medicine, all our services are offered at the reduced cost due to the fact that we are a dental school. The reasonable fees we charge patients cover our operating costs and services.

To learn if you are a candidate for oral surgery at Penn Dental Medicine, please schedule your consultation by calling 215-898-8965.