As an oral surgeon in Jupiter, I know that many patients are often nervous about surgery. To soothe your fears, I have compiled a few common surgery-related questions and answers that might help you feel a bit less stressed out about oral surgery.
1. Will I Need Anesthesia?
For most types of oral surgery, some level of anesthesia will be used. For minor procedures, this might just be the injection of some numbing medication into the area where the procedure will be taking place. This is also known as localized anesthesia. In some cases, we will need to use sedation for your procedure, either because of the scope of the oral surgery or perhaps because a patient experiences a high level of anxiety regarding the procedure.
Often, we use nitrous oxide (also known as “laughing gas”) during oral surgery along with localized anesthesia. Nitrous oxide relaxes a patient but doesn’t render them completely unconscious. After we stop administering nitrous oxide, it takes just a minute or so to stop feeling the effects, as the body eliminates this gas very quickly. In some cases, we use oral medication prior to surgery to help relax the patient.
Of course, we also sometimes use intravenous sedation, either keep the patient semi-conscious or completely unconscious. The level of anesthesia we use depends on the scope of the surgery and the anxiety level of the patient. Your oral surgeon in Jupiter can help you make the best possible decision regarding anesthesia. Before surgery, be sure to discuss any medications that you are taking currently with your oral surgeon as well as disclosing any health conditions you may have. For some patients, it may be necessary to begin taking an antibiotic prior to surgery.
2. Will Oral Surgery Be Painful?
People often fear procedures such as root canal therapy, wisdom tooth extractions, dental implants and other procedures because they are afraid of the pain. Truth be told, oral surgery shouldn’t be painful at all. The pressure and prick of a local anesthesia is typically the only discomfort you will endure during the procedure. As an oral surgeon in Jupiter, I pride myself on my “magic” injection technique and do everything possible to minimize any discomfort before, during and after oral surgery.
After surgery, there may be some pain and swelling, but generally this discomfort can be relieved using over-the-counter pain relievers and perhaps a cold compress placed by the swollen area. Generally, discomfort is mild and won’t last more than one or two days. We do recommend that you take it easy for several days after oral surgery to give your body a chance to rest and heal. We will provide you with aftercare instructions regarding rest, any eating or drinking restrictions as well as how to care for the area where the surgery was performed.
3. How Long Will My Procedure Last?
Every patient is unique; therefore, every oral surgery is unique. The length of the procedure depends upon many factors. This includes the type of surgery and the type of anesthesia used for the procedure. For procedures such as wisdom tooth extraction, this might take one to two hours. Dental implant surgery might take two or three hours. Root canal therapy might take about two hours. Again, this is just a ballpark figure. If you are having dental implant surgery, wisdom teeth extraction, a root canal or other similar level of oral surgery, it is wise to block off the entire day for this surgery. Even if you feel great after surgery, it is important that you go home and rest. If your oral surgeon in Jupiter will be administering any level of I.V. anesthesia, you will need someone to drive you home after the procedure.
4. Will It Take Long To Heal?
For very minor procedures, there may be no discomfort and you will feel great immediately after surgery. Typically, discomfort after oral surgery will last no more than 72 hours and sometimes only 24 hours. The best way to speed up the healing process is to rest immediately after the procedure, take it easy for several days after the surgery and follow all of the aftercare instructions we give you.
Keep in mind that the healing process with dental implants is slightly different than with other oral surgery procedures. While you will be feeling back to normal within a few days, it actually takes several months for implants to “heal” and for the implant to fuse to your jawbone. So, while you will feel just fine, it will be many months before we place a permanent crown on your implant.
If you need an oral surgeon in Jupiter, FL, we can help. In addition to Dr. Lein, our staff includes two specialist periodontists and a specialist endodontist. We accept virtually all forms of dental insurance and dental plans as well as offering many financing options, so give us a call and schedule an appointment at any time.