Dental surgery – what is it?
Generally, surgical treatment is associated with active interference within the hard and soft tissues in the patient’s mouth. For most of patients dental surgeon is associated primarily with tooth extraction, but this specialty is much more advanced and includes the treatment of pathological changes in the jaw and mandible, as well as changes or incorrect construction of the gums and mucous membrane. In dentistry, dental surgery is linked to postoperative aesthetics – “atraumatic” methods used to ensure fast healing without scars and to significantly improve the patient’s appearance.
Dental surgery – types of treatments
The basic treatments are so-called alveolar surgery, ie extractions of teeth unsuitable for treatment, surgical removal of the eighth teeth, so-called third molars (“teeth of wisdom”), retained teeth. The typical treatment includes subsequent bones and gums formation to ensure the best healing and – which is extremely important – maintaining the correct bone volume, which naturally tends to disappear after removing the teeth. The more bones remain, the better the implants stabilization or the movable prosthesis maintenance. In the case of bone deficiency, there are some methods of its reconstruction with augmentation materials, which we also do in our clinic. After extraction, the implantologist or prosthetist takes care of the patient to plan further treatment.
An important part of dental surgery are soft tissue treatments: treatment of gum hypertrophy, removal of mucous cysts or frenula correction (mainly upper lip). The dental surgeon deals also with the hypertrophic and pre-cancerous lesions removal. In our clinic we use lasers for surgical procedures on soft tissues, which significantly shortens the procedure time, minimizes bleeding and ensures quick, painless healing.
In the surgery office we treat also cases of abscesses in the face and neck, which often have origin from the tooth. In the treatment of abscesses, it is necessary to operate (abscess incision) with antibiotic therapy. It is usually advisable to remove the tooth.
For dental surgery, cooperation with other specialists is very important, because it allows to quickly obtain satisfactory results. Plastic surgery within the gums, increasing gum width, covering the recession (exposed teeth necks) or regeneration of bones and gums in the interdental spaces requires cooperation of a surgeon with a periodontologist. Joint surgical and orthodontic treatment is a chance to bring the teeth into the line of occlusion (after surgery) and to reduce crowding by planned extractions because of orthodontic indications. The cooperation with the implantologist and the prosthetist is based on the procedures which increase the volume of the alveolar bone in case of its disappearance, which facilitates further treatment with prosthetic restorations.
Dental surgery – the course of the procedure
After collecting a detailed interview, which is extremely important in dental surgery due to possible complications and the impact of general diseases and medications taken by the patient on the entire procedure, the doctor presents a treatment plan and waits for patient’s agreement. Each surgical procedure carries the risk of complications, usually easy to supply, but the patient must be aware of them and strictly follow the doctor’s instructions. Surgical treatment usually starts with local anesthesia, which eliminates any pain and allows the surgeon work comfortably. The time of each procedure is different and depends on general and local factors. After the procedure, the patient receives a list of recommendations from the doctor.
It is necessary to follow those recommendations to ensure proper healing and prevent uncomfortable symptoms (see below). Typically, to ensure better healing, absorbable or non-absorbable sutures are assumed, depending on the physician’s decision. In the case of non-absorbable sutures, the patient must report for the next visit (usually about a week after the surgery) to remove them. This visit also involves controlling the healing process.
Dental surgery – indications and contraindications