Oral surgery involves any medical procedures performed on your mouth, including your gums, teeth, and jaw. Most oral surgeries can be performed in your dentist’s office or by an oral surgeon in a clinical setting or a hospital. If you find yourself needing oral surgery in Houston, Lovett Dental Gulfgate practitioners have the skill and knowledge required to perform different types of oral surgery.
4 Common Types of Oral Surgeries
1. Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth get their name because they tend to be the last teeth to come in for most adults. Sometimes they fail to develop properly, coming in at an odd angle, erupting only partially through the gumline, or never coming through at all. When that happens, you may have symptoms like:
- Red, swollen gums
- Bad breath
- Problems opening your mouth
- Pain and swelling in your jaw
- Bleeding gums
Left untreated, wisdom teeth can end up damaging your other teeth, increasing your risk of infection. Some people develop cysts within the jaw that lead to further issues with their jaw and teeth. If you’re unable to clean your wisdom teeth properly, food and bacteria can get trapped and lead to decay or gum disease.
Extraction of wisdom teeth typically involves receiving anesthesia to keep you as comfortable as possible during the oral surgery. Once the dentist feels you’re ready, they proceed with removing the affected wisdom teeth, then stitch the wounds and place gauze in the empty tooth socket.
2. Gum Graft
When your gum tissue starts wearing away, it exposes more of the root of your teeth. You may experience heightened sensitivity, especially when you consume hot or cold food and drink. Untreated gum recession can eventually lead to tooth loss. Because it happens so slowly, many people don’t realize what’s happening until noticeable cosmetic changes appear in their smiles.
There are different types of gum graft procedures used to treat gum erosion. A connective tissue graph involves transferring tissue from tissue below the roof of the mouth and adding it to the area of the exposed tooth root. A free gingival graft is similar, except the tissue comes directly from the top layer of tissue lining the roof of your mouth.
If you have a lot of gum tissue available around the tooth, your oral surgeon may opt to perform a lateral graph. Your surgeon takes gum tissue located near the exposed tooth and stretches it over to cover eroding tissue.
3. Root Canal
Root canal procedures involve removing the pulp from the center of your tooth. It contains connective tissue, nerves, and blood vessels that encourage tooth growth. You may require a tooth canal oral surgery if the pulp in one or more of your teeth becomes infected or irritated. Other reasons the pulp might become damaged include:
- A chipped or cracked tooth
- Injury to a tooth
- Advanced tooth decay
- Multiple procedures performed on one tooth
After giving you anesthesia, the surgeon makes an opening in the top of your tooth. They remove the pulp using special tools, making sure to clean out all the tooth canals.
4. Tooth Implants
Dental implants fill in empty spaces left by missing teeth and give people more natural tooth function. It’s also a good option for people who don’t have enough natural tooth root left to support tooth replacements involving bridgework or dentures.
Getting tooth implants involves inserting metal posts into your jawbone, then placing a temporary denture. It typically takes several months for your jawbone to bond with the implant. Once the surgeon decides the base is solid, they proceed with placing a permanent crown.