Texas Oral Surgery Group

FAQs to Know Before Undergoing Dental Surgery

oral surgeon 76210Consulting with your oral surgeon in 76210 and asking questions that bother you about dental surgery can make you feel at ease. Before you go through the process of dental surgery, you should know what to expect. Below are the questions frequently asked by patients during a consultation or before surgery.

Questions to Ask Your Oral Surgeon

How Long Will the Surgery Last?

Learning how long the surgery will take can help you and your companion plan your schedule. Generally, oral surgeons will discuss every detail of your surgery, including how long it will last. They will provide you an overview of the procedures from start to finish.

What Types of Insurance Do You Accept?

If possible, try to look for a dental office that accepts the type of dental insurance you have. At this point, it’s important that you do your research and ask questions, so you won’t be surprised when you get the bill after the surgery.

Do I Need Someone to Drive Me Home After the Surgery?

Among the numerous questions you can ask your oral surgeon, you should never forget this one. Most of the time, general anesthesia and other types of sedation are administered to prevent pain and discomfort.

Once the surgery is over, the anesthesia or sedative may still be in your system, and you’ll be too drowsy to drive home by yourself. Nonetheless, if you forgot to ask your dentist about this, make sure that you come with a companion or ask someone to pick you up after the surgery.

Are There Anesthesia and Sedation Options?

The type of anesthesia or sedative to be administered will depend on the complexity of the treatment and the level of the patient’s anxiety. After an extensive check-up with your oral surgeon, they will present information about the procedures to be performed and the anesthesia that will be administered.

Is It Safe to Eat Before an Oral Surgery Procedure?

For most patients, they might think eating before an oral surgery procedure will help them feel relaxed and comfortable. However, the type of anesthesia or sedative to be applied should be taken into consideration. Some patients experience side effects such as vomiting after coming out of sedation.

To be on the safe side, it’s best that you don’t eat roughly six hours before your scheduled oral surgery.

Is an X-Ray Necessary Before an Oral Surgery?

Most oral surgeries require an x-ray exam to guarantee that there are no obstacles along the way. Complications may develop if oral surgeons perform a procedure without knowing what’s going on inside. It is necessary to guide oral surgeons in looking inside your teeth, mouth, and jaw. With today’s advanced technology, x-ray machines are designed to emit low radiation to ensure safety and reduce side effects.

Where to Find an Oral Surgeon in 76210?

At Texas Oral Surgery Group, we strive to orient every patient with every detail there is to know about their surgery or dental treatments. To check our dental services, schedule an appointment with us today!

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Dos and Don’ts Before Dental Surgery

woman before dental surgery 75075If you’re having dental surgery in 75075, there are a few things you need to prioritize and take into consideration. Be sure to follow these steps when preparing for your big day!

How to Prepare for a Dental Surgery

Head to the Grocery Store

After your dental surgery, you have to expect that you’ll be going on a strict diet. Hence, make sure to pick up the right foods that will aid your recovery. Before going to the grocery store, research what food you want to consume in the first week of your healing process. Don’t hesitate to ask your dentist if you’re unsure!

It’s best that you stick to healthy beverages such as protein drinks, milk, tea, and water while you are recovering. You also have to buy soft foods during the first week to guarantee that the surgical site won’t be compromised. Likewise, you have to avoid spicy and acidic foods, as well as drinks with a straw.

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Whether you’re preparing for an examination, a big pitch at the company, a game, or dental surgery, a good night’s sleep before the big day is important.

Choose the Right Clothing

Being comfortable before, during, and after your surgery will help make your procedure as easy as it can be. Avoid wearing tight clothes and shirts with sleeves because some procedures will need your arm to be available for monitoring blood pressure and taking your vital signs.

Fast

If anesthesia will be administered, your dentist will advise you not to eat or drink anything prior to the surgery. The reason for this is that patients can react to the anesthesia by vomiting the food they just ate.

In case you need to take your medications, you can drink small amounts of water. However, it’s important that you tell your dentist what medications you’re currently using. They may ask you to temporarily stop taking them – even if just the morning of your appointment.

Arrive Early

Dentists and oral surgeons have their day scheduled. Since you’re not the only one being treated on that day, see to it that you arrive at your appointment around 15 minutes early. Aside from eliminating the chances of delaying your treatment and affecting those waiting next in line, being early will give you enough time to prepare.

Also, there are times when last-minute paperwork is required, and some questions may be asked to make sure that there will be nothing that interferes with the treatment.

Avoid Smoking

It is highly recommended that you should not smoke cigarettes for 24 hours before your dental surgery. Apart from slowing down your recovery process, smoking can alleviate the level of pain experienced at the surgical site. It’s also important to not consume alcohol within 48 hours of treatment or use recreational drugs for 14 days.

Ask a Family Member or Friend to Drive You Home

For as long as you are affected by the anesthesia, you will not be able to drive yourself home. Hence, make sure to ask a family member or friend to take you to and from the dental office. Calling a cab is another worthwhile option. You should not, under any circumstances, attempt to drive yourself home, even if you feel like you’re okay to do so.

Pick Up Medication Immediately After the Treatment

After the surgery, your body will require a complete recovery. It is not recommended that you leave the house a day or two after your surgery. With this, it is important that you pick up your medications in advance or allow someone to get them for you.

Read Pre-Op Instructions

Before any surgery, whether it’s a minor or major surgery, reading the pre-op instructions is essential. These instructions will give you an idea regarding how the anesthesia will be administered and how you can prepare for the surgery. The pre-op instructions also include special guidelines that are predominantly relevant to your surgery.

Don’t Be Shy to Ask Questions

The appointment before your big day is the ideal moment when you can ask your dentist questions that are bothering you regarding the surgery. If you have any doubts about the procedure, it’s important to let your dentist or oral surgeon know.

More Information About Dental Surgery in 75075

At Texas Oral Surgery Group, we want our patients to feel comfortable, confident, and well-informed before any treatment. If you have any questions about dental surgery, don’t shy away! Our helpful staff will provide you every detail there is to know.

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General Anesthesia for Dental Care

General anesthesia in Plano eliminates any possible anxiety and pain during your treatment. It allows your dentist more time to perform complex treatments without disturbances. Here are the common questions asked by patients before being administered with general anesthesia.

 

General Anesthesia PlanoFAQs About Dental General Anesthesia

Is it Safe?

In a dental clinic, general anesthesia is administered by a licensed dental professional. Most of these professionals are extensively trained in a clinic or hospital-based anesthesia program and have been engaged in this field for a couple of years. The anesthesia techniques, hospital-grade monitoring equipment, and anesthetic medications used are extremely safe.

More so, dental professionals are trained to pay attention to and monitor your body statistics throughout your treatment. Emergency equipment and medications are made available in case there are some contraindications in the medications you take. Most importantly, these dental professionals are comprehensively knowledgeable on what to do when it comes to medical emergencies and that they are trained in general anesthesia and sedation procedures.

Will My Medical Conditions Hinder the Effects of General Anesthesia?

Medical conditions will not necessarily hinder the effects of general anesthesia. Before administering any general anesthesia, dental professionals consider all facets of your medical history to guarantee that you have a safe and effective treatment. After an extensive evaluation of your medical history, your dentist will get a hold of your doctor to guarantee that the medications you’re taking will not contradict your dental treatment. A good dentist will always start the treatment by ensuring that you’re in the best possible health.

Will I Be Conscious During the Treatment?

Once the general anesthesia kicks in, you’ll be unconscious, and the only reason you would wake up during the treatment is if you were put under minimal sedation. Dental professionals can estimate the precise amount of anesthetic needed by your body for the specific length of treatment. They are trained to consider every possible factor that will affect the treatment, such as the effects of the anesthesia and procedure requirements.

What Happens If There Is a Complication With the Sedation?

The first thing you and your dentist need to remember is to stay calm. What makes office-based sedation or anesthesia better than the rest is that complications are very rare when appropriate training is in place, and precautions are taken. Nonetheless, some things are beyond the dentist’s control, and the best way to deal with this is to make sure that everyone is prepared to handle any possible situation that may arise.

Is There a Difference Between the Anesthesia Administered by a Dentist and Anesthesiologist?

Most dentists and dental specialists are licensed to administer only minimal and moderate sedation such as nitrous oxide, sedative pill, or IV sedation. On the other hand, a dental anesthesiologist is skilled, experienced, and licensed to safely administer all types of sedation. They can administer general anesthesia that can make you unconscious throughout the treatment.

Will Anesthesia Affect My Body?

General anesthesia can produce a wide range of effects on various individuals. Most patients that wake up from this type of sedation feel a little groggy for several hours. There are also times when a patient may emerge from sedation feeling disoriented, possibly nauseous, fatigued, or confused. Oftentimes, it is impossible to know how you will feel after recovering from the treatment. Fortunately, the side effects of anesthesia are well known, and precautions are taken to prevent the most common ones.

What Are Some of the Side Effects?

The common side effects of general anesthesia are minor aches, sore throats, sleepiness, dizziness, and mild nausea. However, these usually wear off after a couple of hours. To quickly recover from these side effects, it’s important that you keep yourself hydrated. In case the side effects become intolerable, you can take pain relievers.

When Will I Feel Normal?

As mentioned earlier, the effects of general anesthesia subside within a few hours after the procedure. However, most dental professionals advise their patients against making a life-changing decision, operating heavy machinery, and driving for 24 hours after the treatment. Since every case varies because patients handle treatments differently, there is no time to determine when you will feel normal. It normally depends on the type of dental treatment and sedation you take.

Will I Be Monitored During and After Treatment?

Your comfort and safety is the primary concern of every good dentist. Our certified assistants are trained to record and monitor your amount of oxygen in the blood, heart rhythms, heart rate, and blood pressure. Your breathing patterns and other health rates will be monitored from the start to the end of every treatment.

 

Get Pain-Free General Anesthesia in Plano

At Texas Oral Surgery Group, we ensure that general anesthesia is delivered by a highly qualified and licensed dental professional. Schedule an appointment with us to know more about the services we offer!

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Is Wisdom Tooth Extraction Considered Surgery?

wisdom teeth removal 76210If you don’t have enough room in your mouth for a third set of molars to fully erupt, a few problems could occur. Before their root structure has a chance to fully develop, you should talk to your dentist about undergoing wisdom teeth removal in 76210. In this way, you’ll be able to prevent future dental complications resulting from the eruption.

Does It Count as Oral Surgery?

Oral Surgery Defined

To determine whether wisdom tooth extraction is counted as oral surgery, delving into the definition of oral surgery is necessary. It is defined as any surgical process performed in or around the mouth and jaw. It is generally conducted by a dental specialist who is experienced in performing certain types of surgery.

The different types of oral surgery include basic dental treatments like root canal and tooth removal. It may also include jaw reconstruction or repositioning. In some instances, oral surgery may also be done to remove a tumor in the gums.

Position of the Wisdom Tooth

According to dentists, wisdom teeth extraction may sometimes be considered oral surgery. Nonetheless, it will still depend on the position of the tooth. If your wisdom tooth partially erupted or does not come out straight, minor oral surgery may be advisable. More so, surgery is also needed if the tooth has incorrectly erupted through the gum line.

For instance, if you have an impacted wisdom tooth, you’ll most likely need to undergo some surgical intervention. Such process should be done before the tooth erupts to prevent it from pushing other teeth out of place.

Importance of Extracting Wisdom Teeth

First, we need to look into the position of your tooth to know whether it’s necessary to get it extracted or not. Some people have wisdom teeth come out perfectly straight and have enough room in the jaw. Unfortunately, most people have an impacted wisdom tooth or a tooth that may have erupted properly but doesn’t not have enough space. This situation makes it mandatory to get the tooth removed to prevent further dental complications.

Some of the possible problems related to not removing your wisdom teeth include infection, cyst formation, possible crowding, and damage to the adjacent teeth.

Know if Wisdom Teeth Extraction is for You

If your wisdom teeth are stuck beneath your gum line, have partially erupted, or get impacted, you will need the help of a dentist or oral surgeon. A lot of patients don’t have enough room in their jaw to accommodate a wisdom tooth, which is why it is highly advisable that the tooth be removed as soon as possible.

Expectations After Wisdom Teeth Removal

After your wisdom teeth removal and the anesthesia wears off, you’ll be experiencing some discomfort, swelling, and bleeding. Depending on the anesthesia or sedative administered, you may expect foggy thoughts and disorientation.

Once the extraction process is completed, your dentist will place a gauze pad over the extraction site to prevent the bleeding. Remember not to remove the gauze pad for at least 30 minutes after the surgery. You can also ask your dentist about when and how to replace it.

*Note: It is commonly recommended you have a friend or family member pick you up and gather all your necessary information after the surgery. Depending on the form of sedative used, you may not remember all the directives given – and you’ll want to remember.

Swelling not only occurs on the surgical site, but you may also experience swollen cheeks due to the pressure applied during the extraction. However, there is no need to worry because your dentist will provide you with medications to help deal with the swelling and discomfort.

What to Do After Wisdom Teeth Removal in 76210

Whether you had a minor or major oral surgery, it’s imperative that you be prepared before, during, and after the procedure. You have to organize a recovery space in your home for optimum comfort. Knowing the dos and don’ts after the surgery is also important for fast recovery. To learn more about wisdom teeth extraction and recovery, contact our staff at Texas Oral Surgery Group!

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Why Are Dental Implants So Popular?

getting dental implants dentonDental implants in Denton are the closest thing in dentistry when it comes to getting natural-looking teeth. A natural tooth consists of a root and a crown. If you compare natural teeth to a dental implant, you’ll see they have the same basic parts. Both have a crown and root that hold the tooth securely under the gum and anchored to the jaw. If you want to know more about how dental implants became popular, please continue reading.

 

All You Need to Know About Dental Implants

History of Dental Implants

If you’re curious about how dental implants came into existence, you need to go way back 2500 BC. It was at this time when the Egyptians created gold ligature wires that serves to stabilize natural teeth. It was made to address the rising conditions of developing periodontal diseases.

However, it was only in 1978 when a two-stage threaded implant was invented. It was Dr. P. Branemark who designed an implant made of titanium. As of this date, modifications continue to find solutions that can cater to every patient’s dental needs. There are still evolving studies that aim to develop a type of dental implant that reduces the time it takes for osseointegration to happen.

With advanced technology, dental implant procedures have now reached a remarkably high success rate of 98%. Because of this rate, they are now considered to be the ideal tooth replacement treatment for ideal candidates.

Why is Replacing a Lost Tooth Necessary?

Tooth loss disturbs the natural balance between teeth and bone. The jawbone starts shrinking once a tooth is lost and your gum recedes. This bone loss can weaken neighboring teeth causing further tooth loss. Opposing teeth, if left unsupported, can then move into the missing tooth space causing orthodontic and restorative problems.

Missing teeth and a diminished jawbone can make your face look older than it should, causing your cheeks to become hollow and saggy. It may also affect the way you eat your food, as well as the way you speak.

Treatments Other Than Dental Implants

If a tooth is severely broken or decayed and cannot be repaired through simple dental treatments, then a dental implant is the best way to address this concern. In earlier times, damaged and misplaced teeth were only treated with dentures, root canals, and bridges.

Long-Lasting and Worth It

Dental implants are long-lasting and worth your money. They will last for many years as long as good dental hygiene is maintained. As for the aesthetic appearance, it can be retained for more than 10 years. This, however, requires that no cavities must occur in the crown restoration or anywhere near the implant location. To help you get rid of decay and plaque, you must schedule a regular appointment with your dentist.

Implants usually last a long time. When patients are missing all of their teeth, long-term studies show an 85% success rate. Recent studies show a success rate of greater than 95% for patients missing one or several teeth, which compares favorably with other areas in the body that receive implant replacement, such as hips or knees.

Nevertheless, if one of your dental implants either doesn’t heal properly or loosens after some time, you may need to have it extracted. After the site heals, another implant will be placed.

Looks Like Natural Teeth

All patients want to get tooth replacement options that will give them natural-looking teeth. This is why dental implants are designed to look similar to any patient’s natural teeth. Another great thing about dental implants, apart from their appearance, is that you’ll regain your ability to eat what you want.

Likewise, the convenience of this dental treatment, as opposed to dentures, cannot be undervalued. Since dental implants are permanent tooth replacements, you no longer have to remove and clean them separately from your teeth. That moment when you forgot your dentures in your bathroom or on the table will never happen again when you have dental implants.

Get Excellent Dental Implants in Denton

In the age of cosmetic treatments and surgeries, we are bombarded daily with images of having a perfect face, hair, or smile. This go-getting behavior for being the best that we can has pushed us to look for treatments that will help us achieve this dream. A lot of people are not content with their missing, dull-looking, or crooked teeth.

Aside from addressing this go-getting behavior, dental treatments also provide helpful benefits to your health. For instance, a missing tooth will not only affect your appearance, but will also cause bone loss, jaw pain, and increased bite problems.

Want to know more? At Texas Oral Surgery Group, our knowledgeable staff will be glad to answer any inquiries you may have, especially when it comes to dental implants.

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Oral Consultation Expectations

oral consultation gainesvilleThe first step toward getting a minor or major surgery is scheduling an oral consultation in Gainesville. If you think you are in need of a dental treatment or surgery such as a root canal, dental implant, wisdom tooth removal, or reconstructive jaw surgery, getting in touch with a cosmetic or oral surgeon is the best way to start the process. Below are the things you can expect from an oral consultation with a dentist or dental surgeon.

What Happens During an Oral Consultation?

Review of Medical History

Before any treatment or surgery starts, your dentist will first conduct an initial review of your medical record, as well as ask you questions about your overall health. Through this initial review, dental professionals will be able to carefully plan out your treatment and avoid any complications or potential risks that may be caused by your health condition.

An extensive review of medical records includes the assessment of pieces of information about your adverse reactions to anesthesia, drug allergies, past surgeries, and other health problems. Your dentist will also ask you about any over-the-counter medications or prescriptions you’re taking.

During your oral consultation, your dentist will also ask you about past dental problems you’ve encountered. Knowing the previous treatments you have undergone will help them determine the status of your dental condition.

Communication is a two-way street, and just as it’s up to your dentist to ensure that you have all the information they need, it is vital that you take an active role in sharing information, especially when it comes to your concerns. A good and reliable dentist will do everything feasible to make your experience as stress-free as possible, and your willingness to share concerns is essential.

Tests and Examinations

Once your dentist has examined your medical records, they will visually examine your jaw, teeth, gums, and mouth to check if there are visible signs of dental problems. Since most of these problems cannot be seen through a mere visual examination, your dentist will recommend that you take imaging tests, including CT Scans and X-rays, to get a clearer view of your dental conditions.

The scans and tests will show a three-dimensional image of your soft tissues, teeth, and bones. These will aid your dentist in planning for your treatment or surgery. There are also instances when your dentist will require a detailed cast of your jaw and mouth. You will be asked to bite down on a soft substance to take the alignment and structure of your mouth.

Providing Information

As stated earlier, communication is a two-street; hence, your dentist will not only require you to talk about your dental and medical history, but they will also explain the different oral surgery treatments applicable to your condition.

Likewise, they will often allow you to choose the type of sedative and anesthesia you want. The majority of patients prefer those types where they are unaware of the entire process to make sure they won’t feel any pain.

A good dentist or oral surgeon will always discuss the pros and cons of the treatment, including the type of anesthesia to be used. They will also discuss if there are any complications or risks that may result because of the surgery.

Tips Will Be Discussed

Aside from the pros and cons of the treatment, your dentist or oral surgeon will likewise give you tips on how to handle oral surgery before, during, and after. A lot of patients become nervous the moment they see dental tools in the clinic, but everything will be done to make you as comfortable as possible.

More so, if the anesthesia or sedative you’re about to be administered with will take long before it subsides, you will be asked to bring a designated driver with you.

You will also be provided with a list of post-operative instructions to follow. These instructions may include:

  • What you need to avoid
  • What medications to take
  • When you can resume your normal activities
  • How long will the recovery take
  • What foods to eat

Get an Oral Consultation in Gainesville

This article is only a quick summary of what to expect on your first oral consultation. Oral consultations are highly important and can affect the outcome of your treatments. At Texas Oral Surgery Group, we pride ourselves on delivering optimal dental treatments to our patients.

From your first call and consultation with Drs. Stewart and Michael through the entire treatment process, our team is dedicated to giving you exceptional patient care. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out! We’ll always be glad to cater your dental needs!

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What is the Difference Between a Dentist and an Oral Surgeon?

Oral Surgeon North TXDentists and oral surgeons both play critical roles in ensuring patients’ oral health, but they are two separate disciplines. General dentists have a primarily focus on preventative care, such as teeth cleaning, X-rays, and comprehensive oral screenings, and restore missing and decayed or chipped teeth. Oral surgery is unique in that it incorporates the art and science of both dentistry and medicine. As such, oral surgeons have a distinctive combination of knowledge and skills that enables them to diagnose and treat a number of surgical conditions – from the removal of wisdom teeth, placement of dental implants and bone grafting, to management of complex facial trauma and sleep apnea. To become specialized in a particular area requires time and dedication and oral surgery is no different.

Education and Training

Following four years of dental school, oral surgeons participate in a four or six-year, hospital-based residency program focused on the complexity of facial structures, specifically the mouth and jaw. All residents undergo training in the administration of anesthesia, including intravenous (IV) sedation, nitrous oxide and general anesthesia, with six-year residency programs incorporating a medical degree. After receiving their degree, oral surgeons can elect to undergo an intense examination by the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery (ABOMS) to become board-certified. This process requires submission of cases that demonstrate a broad area of surgical expertise, an intensive written exam, and a lengthy oral exam. Doctors Stewart and Michael are both Diplomates of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

Ongoing Education

Maintaining board certification is a career-long process. Beyond the initial certification, diplomates must adhere to a certification maintenance process that ensures their commitment to lifelong learning, practicing in a safe and contemporary manner, and keeping current with the latest knowledge and skills. This includes maintaining active and unrestricted state licensure and continuous hospital privileges. Both Doctors Stewart and Michael maintain privileges at Medical City Plano, a Level I Trauma Center located in Plano, Texas.

Areas of Focus

General dentists primarily focus on preventative care; however, many also help to address basic oral issues such as gum disease and cavities, and may offer cosmetic procedures, like teeth whitening and veneers. When a patient requires more complex care, dentists often refer them to an oral surgeon. With their extensive medical, dental and surgical training, oral surgeons are experts on recognizing and treating issues related to the face, oral cavity, jaw, and teeth.

Patients often see oral surgeons for complex issues, including:

  • Teeth extractions
  • Dental implant placement
  • Removal of oral or jaw tumors
  • Oral and face biopsy
  • Jaw joint disorders
  • General facial pain
  • Bone grafting
  • Salivary gland disorders
  • Facial trauma and reconstruction
  • Orthognathic Surgery

Beyond Doctors Stewart and Michael’s training and combined 50 years of experience, patients can feel confident knowing that the entire Texas Oral Surgery Group team across our four offices is as committed to patient care today as when we opened over 30 years ago.  We provide a full range of oral surgery services and invite you to contact any of our locations (Denton, Plano, Decatur, Gainesville ) if we can be of further assistance.

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Patient Tips for Managing Oral Surgery During the Holidays

Oral Surgery Recovery North TXThe holidays are traditionally a time when we surround ourselves with family and friends, make that long trip to visit Grandma, or ring in the New Year shoulder-to-shoulder with fellow revelers – but nothing has been traditional about 2020. While no one wants to spend their holidays undergoing and recovering from oral surgery, if it needs be done, the holiday season is a good time to do it.

We know that oral surgery isn’t exactly festive but making a few adjustments beforehand can mean the difference between resting comfortably and the alternative. Put the tips below on your list, be sure to check it twice, and you’ll be on your way to a successful recovery:

Share the cookies and eggnog with Santa. Eating might be the last thing on your mind as you head into surgery but your post-operative diet plays an important role in recovery. Restrictions vary depending on the procedure, but plan on advancing your diet back to normal as soon as possible after surgery. Your jaw muscles are used to talking and eating every day.  It is best to avoid long periods of time without using those muscles as they will tend to stiffen, cramp, and become very sore.  It’s best to avoid spicy or acidic foods, such as tomato-based sauces and orange juice, which can cause burning or pain if ingested too soon after oral surgery. Hydration also plays an important role in recovery. Though seasonal spirits might be on your mind, we -urge you to use caution when consuming alcohol if you are taking narcotics or acetaminophen (Tylenol).

Rest & Recovery is the new Holly & Jolly. While you won’t be out caroling, you can make the most of this mandatory downtime by planning ahead. Cue up movies or TV shows you’ve been meaning to watch, grab some good books and get ready for a few days of sedentary entertainment – doctors’ orders! While we encourage a quick return to normal, it is extremely important to manage your pain properly in the first 48-72 hours following oral surgery.  Proper pain management often requires taking medicines that make you drowsy.  Thus, it is best to have some easy at-home entertainment ready to go.  To help minimize swelling, it’s important to keep your head elevated, so keep pillows and blankets within arm’s reach of your couch, recliner, or bed. Whether it is the TV room, bedroom, or den, preparing your rest and recovery area before surgery will help you avoid last-minute scrambling, making for an easy transition home.

Don’t wait until the ball drops to get ahead of pain and infection. The amount of pain after oral surgery varies depending on the extent of the procedure and the patient’s individual health history. Drs. Stewart and Michael will prescribe any necessary medication to prevent infection and/or manage pain. Before surgery, and again upon discharge, you will receive detailed postoperative care instructions and schedule a follow-up appointment if needed. To ensure a smooth recovery, it’s essential that you follow these instructions and keep your post-op appointment if applicable. If you experience any recovery related problems or have questions, don’t hesitate to contact our office.

Texas Oral Surgery Group has served the greater Dallas/Fort Worth community for over three decades and Drs. Stewart and Michael have over 50 years of combined experience. Our entire surgical team at Texas Oral Surgery Group is Dental Anesthesia Assistant National Certification Examination (DAANCE) certified, which is the highest level of certification granted by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS). If oral surgery is on your list this holiday season, you can rest assured that you’ve made the right choice for your oral and maxillofacial needs.

We pride ourselves on delivering the best patient experience possible. From your first call and consultation with Drs. Stewart and Michael through the entire treatment process, our team is dedicated to providing quality patient care.  If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to any of our locations (Denton, Plano, Decatur, Gainesville ).

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The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…for wisdom teeth removal? While we generally don’t associate the holidays with oral surgery, if you could choose a good time to have your wisdom teeth removed, the holiday season would be among the best.

How do you know if you need your wisdom teeth removed?

While not everyone needs to have their wisdom teeth removed, the vast majority of us do because we simply don’t have space by the time these molars arrive. Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars that erupt in the late teen years to early 20s after the rest of our teeth have come in. Although, some people will develop these teeth much earlier! As a result, they become impacted (unable to erupt normally) in bone or gum tissue, causing crowding among your current teeth, which can lead to severe jaw pain, infection, and damage to adjacent teeth. For specific information on the types of impactions, visit our page dedicated to wisdom teeth.

Each patient is unique, and there is never a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to oral surgery. However, the timing for wisdom teeth removal is usually based on three factors – patient age, root formation, and tooth position.

As far as a patient’s age goes, the younger, the better, as younger patients typically do better with surgical procedures and have fewer overall complications. The older the patient, the longer their recovery period will be from a wisdom tooth extraction, which is why most patients opt to get their wisdom teeth removed as early as possible.

Age is also related to root formation. In young adults, the root system of wisdom teeth is softer and not fully developed. As a result, the extraction process is typically much easier and less complex during this time. As time progresses, wisdom teeth develop hard, dense root systems that are integrated more solidly with the jaw bone, making extractions in later adulthood much more difficult.

Position of the teeth is another determining factor when deciding on wisdom teeth removal. Wisdom teeth are frequently misaligned and may position themselves horizontally, be angled toward or away from the second molars, or be angled inward or outward. This increases risk, as poor alignment of wisdom teeth can crowd or damage adjacent teeth, the jawbone, or nerves.

It’s important to note that even if you are not currently experiencing discomfort, you may still require extraction, as some patients show no symptoms at all. To determine the position of the wisdom teeth and see if there are present or potential problems, patients should undergo an oral exam and x-rays of the mouth. For a complete evaluation, we encourage you to contact one of our four practice locations (Denton, Plano, Decatur, Gainesville ).

Why the holiday season?

For non-emergency cases where patients have the ability to schedule wisdom teeth extraction in advance, the winter holidays are a convenient time to have it done. The thought of winter break probably doesn’t bring images of a dental chair to mind, but you might think differently after reviewing the following reasons:

 

  • Recovery Time – Healing from oral surgery takes time. Typically, we recommend taking a few days off from work or school to rest after your wisdom teeth are removed. Given that we tend to have lighter schedules over the holidays, it’s generally one of the best times to be out of the office (and there’s no school to miss).
  • Pain Management – Many patients are able to control pain after extraction with over-the-counter medications. However, some require prescription pain medications that can cause nausea and / or interfere with their ability to focus and stay awake. With a more casual holiday schedule, patients are better able to rest comfortably, with or without prescription medications, as there isn’t the usual rush to get back on schedule.
  • Insurance Benefits – At the end of the year, many dental benefits expire on families’ insurance plans. If you or your family has a Flexible Savings Account (FSA), you’ve likely allotted a certain amount of money for dental procedures. These funds usually expire and restart at the beginning of the new year. Scheduling your wisdom teeth extraction during the winter holidays is the perfect way to take advantage of these benefits before they expire.

 

We understand that no one wants to spend their holidays undergoing and recovering from oral surgery, but if it has to be done the end of the year is a good time to do it. We recommend taking a few days off from work or school to rest after your wisdom teeth are removed and the holidays provide some built-in  down-time. We suggest getting this taken care of, so you can put wisdom teeth and 2020 behind you for good. Contact any of our four locations (Denton, Plano, Decatur, Gainesville ) to schedule a consultation today, but hurry because we’ll be singing Auld Lang Syne before you know it!

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Can Socket Preservation Save My Smile?

Socket Preservation North Central, TXRemember how exciting it was to have a loose tooth as a child? The impending visit from the Tooth Fairy, showing off that new grin to your friends, watching as a new tooth grew! Adults? Not so much. The Tooth Fairy has a reputation for neglecting her older clients, our colleagues most certainly will not be impressed with a gap-toothed smile, and, to make matters worse, we now have a missing tooth and the risk of bone loss to contend with – oh, the joys of adulthood!

When a tooth is extracted, it leaves behind an empty socket in the strip of bone that surrounds the roots of teeth (i.e., the alveolar ridge bone). Since there is no longer a tooth to support, it’s not uncommon for the bone beneath the socket to begin to resorb and remodel once the tooth is removed. This process can be significant, with the average patient losing between 3 and 5 mm of alveolar bone within three months of tooth extraction.

Now, you may be wondering, “Do I really need to be concerned with bone loss if I don’t have a tooth there anyway?” In short, yes. Each tooth is securely attached to the jawbone with an intricate network of bone, nerves, soft tissue, and ligaments. When a tooth is extracted, a number of oral health issues can occur:

  • Aesthetics: Without adequate support from bone structure and teeth, your smile starts to cave in in the area of extraction – much like a Halloween jack-o-lantern that was carved too early. Over time, your skin may begin to look shriveled and your smile will be unbalanced and unnatural.
  • Alignment Issues: Your teeth are always moving, particularly into open spaces. As time passes, a hole on one side of your smile can lead to a severe shift of your teeth, affecting your smile and subsequently requiring orthodontic treatment.
  • Implant Complications:  If you plan on getting a dental implant to replace the extracted tooth in the future,  a damaged and recessed bone greatly increases the likelihood of complications.

Fortunately, bone loss is no longer inevitable thanks to a  technique known as socket preservation.  Socket, or alveolar ridge, preservation involves placing a bone graft into the socket, where the tooth once was. This graft can be made of synthetic materials, bone from other animal sources or human bone. In addition, the use of Platelet Rich Fibrin (PRF), a natural product from your own blood may be added to the bone graft to enhance healing and bone formation. After putting the graft in the socket, the surgeon usually covers it up with a collagen membrane, then sutures the opening to keep it closed. The goal of socket preservation is to improve the appearance of the remaining teeth and gums and make the process of getting a dental implant in the future less complicated.

Though socket preservation was once deemed unnecessary, multiple studies have shown less bone resorption when socket preservation procedures were used, compared to cases where no graft material was placed in fresh alveolar sockets. And a recent retrospective review of the world’s published literature on socket grafting showed that human bone allograft and PRF produced the most predictable positive results.  Due to how quickly bone resorption begins, socket preservation should be performed at the same time as the tooth extraction to ensure the best outcome possible.

With a combined 50+ years of experience, Drs. Stewart and Michael are well versed in socket preservation.  If you’re interested in learning more about socket preservation procedures, please don’t hesitate to reach out to any of our four locations (Denton, Plano, Decatur, Gainesville). Our team would be happy to answer any questions you may have.

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