Oral surgery is typically the extraction of teeth, although it can also be used to repair teeth or the jaw. While the removal of wisdom teeth is the most well-known type of oral surgery, there are many reasons why oral surgery may be required. Oral surgery can diagnose, repair, or treat serious conditions affecting a patient’s teeth, palate, lips, jaw, or face. It can also alleviate problems due to obstructed sleep apnea, infections, or facial pain. Some surgeons may perform surgery to repair maxillofacial region damage caused by a serious accident or injury.
Tooth extraction is the most common oral surgery. Typically, after the application of anesthetic to the area, special tools are inserted between the tooth and gum that surrounds the tooth.
The tooth is moved back and forth within its socket (the bone that encases the tooth’s root)until it separates from the ligament that holds the tooth in place. Once it is loosened, the tooth is removed from its socket.
When a tooth is impacted, the procedure will depend on how many roots it has and its location under your gum. Patient sedation is often used in addition to the application of an anesthetic to the impacted area. If necessary, a gum tissue flap is created to access bone tissue, and a small opening is made in the bone that covers the impacted tooth. The impacted tooth is then cut into small pieces and removed through the opening. The gum tissue flap is then repositioned and sutured in place.
Third molars, also called wisdom teeth, are the last set of permanent teeth to erupt in a person’s mouth and are the ones least needed for good dental health. Wisdom teeth can endanger a patient’s dental health and need to be removed when the jaw is too small to hold them. As a result, they force other teeth out of alignment and can damage your bite.
Sometimes wisdom teeth do not erupt correctly and crowd the roots of other teeth, forcing them out of alignment, and can damage your bite.
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