You might be scared of the word Oral Surgery when your dentist first recommends it.

However, oral and maxillofacial surgery can involve operating on your teeth and jaws.

Moreover, it also involves other structures of your face like your jaw alignment or cleft lip and palate.

While the most common oral surgery is Tooth Extraction, some maxillofacial surgeons can also treat conditions like cleft palate and obstructive sleep apnea, OSA.

It is important to note that the density who undergo extensive study and training to perform certain kinds of oral surgeries.

It is important to note that there are different types of oral surgeries and some of them also include repositioning your jaws.

On the other hand, in case you have a serious gum induction, your dentist may perform periodontal surgery.

Keep on reading to learn more about them in detail.

Why do you need Oral Surgery?

There are a few instances when you need oral and maxillofacial surgery other than the ability to tolerate general anesthesia.

In such cases, your dentist may use other forms of anesthesia like regional blocks or local anesthesia with intravenous sedation.

Moreover, there are relative contraindications that may exclude certain elective procedures.

On an individual basis, your dentist will evaluate the conditions, weighing the benefits against risks.

oral surgery 3

Among the conditions of concern are:

High blood pressure: if you have a high blood pressure that is 180 0r higher systolic pressure or the diastolic pressure is 110mgHg or higher.

Active Infections for which your dentist will need oral surgery.

Extensive osteonecrosis or bone death and certain cancers may metastasize if such surgery is performed.

Purpose of Oral Surgery

Oral and maxillofacial surgery can help to treat a wide range of conditions that affect the craniomaxillofacial.

This consists of your mouth, jaws, face, neck, and skull.

Let’s discuss them as follows:

Diagnostic and Therapeutic Procedures

These include the following:

Mandibular Joint Surgery: This one helps to repair the jaw and to treat temporomandibular joint, or TMJ Disorder.

Moreover, it can help to treat masticatory musculoskeletal pain or burning mouth syndrome.

Maxillomandibular Osteotomy: The surgical repositioning of the upper and low jaw to improve breathing and treat obstructive sleep apnea.

Radiofrequency Needle Ablation: This is a minimally invasive procedure that involves high-frequency radio waves to severe the nerve pathways.

These can trigger trigeminal neuralgia, migraine, and similar chronic pain disorders.

Some of the other diagnostic and therapeutic procedures are:

  • tumor resection
  • septoplasty with turbinate reduction.


Dentoalveolar Procedures

Such procedures involve:

Dental Implants: Dental implant includes endosteal implants that your dentist will directly place into the jawbone under the gum but also above the jawbone.

Orthognathic Surgery: Also termed as Corrective Jaw Surgery can help to straighten crooked bites or misaligned jaw.

Pre-Prosthetic Bone Grafting: The surgical implantation of bone that your dentist will extract from your body to make a foundation for dental implants.

Wisdom Tooth Extraction: A surgical procedure that requires the removal of bone around the root of the third molar or wisdom tooth.

Periodontal Surgery

In cases you have severe gum diseases, you will need periodontal surgery. Moreover, the symptoms include:

  • gums that have swelling, redness, or bleeding
  • deep pockets that form between your gums and teeth
  • loose teeth
  • pain while chewing food
  • bad breath
  • gums that recede or pull away from your teeth

Moreover, there are different types of surgical options and your doctor will determine the type of surgery you will need and depending on the specific condition.

Flap Surgery

It is a common procedure in which your surgeon will make small cuts in your gum and lift a section of tissue back.

They will remove tartar and bacteria from your tooth and from under your gums. They will then suture the gums back, so the tissue fits firmly around your teeth.

Bone Grafting

In cases gum disease causes severe damage to the bone surrounding your tooth root, your dentist might replace it with a graft.

The bone graft comes from small parts of your own bone, a synthetic bone, or donated bone.

Moreover, this procedure helps to prevent tooth loss and can also help to promote bone regrowth.

Guided Tissue Regeneration

This technique involves placing a small piece of material between the bone and gum tissue to allow the bone to regrow.

Soft Tissue Grafts

In case the gums recede, a graft can help to restore some of the tissue that you lost.

Dentists will remove a small piece of tissue from the roof of your mouth or use donor tissue to attach to the areas where tissue is sparse or missing.


In some cases, surgeons apply a gel that contains special proteins to the diseased tooth root.

Moreover, this encourages healthy bone and tissue growth.

Preparing for Oral Surgery

The preparation for oral surgery depends on the condition you are getting treatment for and the aims of the surgery.

In cases the oral and maxillofacial surgery is indicated, you will need to meet your surgeon to review your pre-operative results and walk through the procedure step by step.

Moreover, do not hesitate to ask as many questions about the procedure and what to expect during the recovery.

It is important to note that before the procedure, you will need to stop taking certain medications.

These include aspirin, pain relievers, and blood thinners.


Most dentists advise you to avoid smoking or drink alcohol at least 24 hours before the procedure takes place.

Furthermore, your dentist might give you an antibiotic before the procedure to lower your chances of developing an infection.

You should also arrange for someone to take you home after the procedure is complete.

The anesthesia, sedation, or other medications you will receive before and during the procedure might affect your reaction times.

This means that it may not be safe for you to drive afterward.

Make sure to follow the specific instructions of your doctor on how to prepare for your surgery.

What to Expect on the day of Oral Surgery?

The expectations of oral surgery are very much diverse.

However, there are some common elements that are the same in all procedures, and understanding them can help you to prepare better.

Before the Surgery

After checking in, you will undergo pre-operative preparations.

These are:

In some cases, your surgeon will administer local anesthesia and will also examine pre-operative dental exams with or without X-rays.

Moreover, in some cases they may administer monitored anesthesia care, MAC to induce sleep. Moreover, they will also connect you to an n ECG machine to monitor your heart rate and a pulse oximeter to monitor your blood oxygen.

During the Surgery

After preparing for surgery, your dentist or doctor may perform open surgery, endoscopic surgery, or minimally invasive open surgery.

They may also classify them as reconstructive or aesthetic surgeries.

oral surgery 1

Upon completion of the surgery, they may apply sutures, staples, or tape to close your incisions. Moreover, they will also apply a sterile bandage on the top of incisions.

After the Surgery

After the surgery, you will be taken to the post-anesthesia care unit where your doctor will monitor you until you fully wake up from anesthesia.

In the case of local anesthesia, it takes about 10 to 15 minutes. While with general anesthesia, it can take 45 minutes.

After your vital signs are normal and you can steadily walk, you can go home with either a family member or a friend.

However, in some cases, you might need to stay in the hospital.

Furthermore, your doctor or dentist will give you pain medications to help ease post-operative pain as well as oral antibiotics to prevent any post-operative infections.

Recovering from Oral Surgery

In most cases, your recovery depends on the severity of your condition, your overall health, and the type of procedure.

Make sure to follow the instructions of your dentist carefully.

In some cases, you can expect minor bleeding and discomfort from any kind of dental surgery, or oral surgery.

Moreover, you can resume many normal activities after your dentist removes the sutures.

It is important to note that smoking can interfere with how your body heals after the surgery.

Try avoiding this habit for as long as possible after such procedures.

after the surgery

Your dentist might also ask you to use a special mouth rinse or take an antibiotic after the surgery.

Furthermore, you might not be able to brush or floss your teeth in certain areas of your mouth until complete recovery.

After oral surgery, in most cases, dentists and doctors recommend eating soft foods for a week or two after the procedure.

Some examples of such foods are:

  • pudding
  • ice cream
  • yogurt
  • Jell-O
  • scrambled eggs
  • cottage cheese
  • pasta
  • mashed potatoes, etc.

Final Thoughts

In case you have oral surgery, it probably means that you need a specific procedure that is beyond the scope of a regular dentist or a healthcare provider. It does not mean that the condition is more severe, but rather that the procedure needs a specialist to correct the issue. Moreover, in the case of your face, jaw, mouth, and skull, you will need a person with specialist training.

On the other hand, in the case of periodontal surgery, it is important to take care of your gums as it can lower your chances of tooth loss and further gum damage. Moreover, you will also be less likely to develop other health problems like diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and osteoporosis.