Monthly Archives: August 2023

maxillofacial surgery Richmond, Indiana

What You Need to Know About Maxillofacial Surgery

Have you been referred to a specialist in maxillofacial surgery?

Dentists, orthodontists and doctors in Richmond, Indiana, typically make these referrals when a patient requires expert care to correct an issue with the mouth, teeth or jaws. Surgical treatment can address functional and aesthetic concerns resulting from injuries, diseases, disorders and congenital conditions.

Maxillofacial procedures can be invasive – this form of treatment is surgery, after all – so you’ll need to consult with a skilled, board-certified Richmond maxillofacial surgeon to determine the best course of action. But, reading the following may prove helpful.

maxillofacial surgery Richmond, Indiana

Who Performs Maxillofacial Surgery?

Every maxillofacial surgeon starts the journey to board certification with four years of dental school. This is followed by four to six years of hands-on, hospital-based surgical training, after which comes testing and an arduous peer review process. Along the way, they might also study to become specialists in oral surgery – and now you know why many are considered oral and maxillofacial surgeons.

What Procedures do Maxillofacial Surgeons Complete?

Board-certified specialists in maxillofacial surgery – particularly those who also have board certification in oral surgery – are skilled in a range of procedures designed to improve function, treat disease, relieve pain and alleviate facial deformities. Many surgeries also enhance facial appearance, but that’s not the main goal.

Richmond maxillofacial surgeons assist patients in resolving many different problems. The surgical procedures these specialists complete on a regular basis include:

  • Extraction of impacted canines and impacted wisdom teeth
  • Bone grafting to rebuild jawbone strength after tooth loss
  • Removal of dental abscesses, oral cysts and mouth tumors
  • Pre-prosthetic procedures to prepare for dental implant placement
  • Repair of cleft lip, cleft palate and other oral and facial congenital defects
  • Jaw and facial reconstruction following a traumatic accident or injury

In addition, Richmond patients suffering from the pain of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder can also find relief through maxillofacial surgery. And for those with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a procedure to enlarge the airway can provide a permanent solution, as that can correct the root of the problem.

Should You Consider Maxillofacial Surgery?

Many people in Richmond find maxillofacial procedures to be life-changing – but simply having a referral in hand doesn’t mean moving ahead with surgical treatment is the right choice.

The decision requires careful thought, and you’ll want to get input from at least one local specialist. With more than 10 years of experience, the professional team at Richmond Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery has what it takes to determine if you can benefit from surgical treatment. And, if so, you can count on us to take a safe, minimally invasive approach.

For more information, or to schedule a maxillofacial surgery consultation, contact our office in Richmond, Indiana, today.

dental implant, oral surgery Richmond, Indiana

Does Dental Implant Placement Involve Oral Surgery?

In Richmond, Indiana, dental implant placement is widely regarded as the treatment of choice for people with missing teeth. However, upon hearing that oral surgery is involved, some patients are reluctant to move forward – which is unfortunate, as procedures are rather straightforward for specialists in tooth replacement.

From our viewpoint, the experience of losing a tooth and living with the decreased function of an incomplete smile can be far more unpleasant than the process of getting dental implants. And thanks to anesthesia, Richmond patients can have safe, comfortable oral surgery procedures.

dental implant, oral surgery Richmond, Indiana

How Dental Implant Placement Works

Dental implants are comprised of three parts:

  • The titanium post, which acts as a replacement tooth root
  • The restoration, which may be crown, bridge or full dental arch
  • The abutment, which connects the post to the dental restoration

The placement of the dental implants is considered to be oral surgery because the post (or posts) must be inserted into the jawbone. This isn’t as invasive as it sounds – the procedure requires only minor incisions in the gums. And as we mentioned, anesthesia helps keep patients calm and comfortable.

Oral Surgery to Restore Jawbone Density

Sometimes, before implant placement can take place, Richmond patients need to get a jawbone graft. Implants need a strong foundation of bone to remain stable and secure, and when someone has been living with missing teeth for quite some time, bone loss is to be expected. After all, with the tooth roots gone, the jawbone lacks the stimulation it needs to retain a healthy structure.

A jawbone graft offers a solution – and while bone grafting is another oral surgery procedure, it’s minimally invasive and, in some cases, doesn’t take a separate appointment. Graft material is placed within the socket area, where the implant post goes, and the step involves just a small incision. Over the course of several weeks, the graft fuses with the jawbone, giving it the strength and stability required.

Should You See an Oral Surgeon for Dental Implants?

While some dentists are trained in implant placement and may have the ability to restore smiles, going to an oral surgeon is the safest option. Anyone who is even slightly wary of the tooth replacement procedure can feel reassured by having an expert in oral surgery take on the task.

Also, if a jawbone graft is needed, which is often the case for patients with missing teeth, a visit to a local oral surgeon may be a must since most dentists aren’t trained or skilled in bone grafting.

What’s more, some local oral surgeons – including the team here at Richmond Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery – specialize in tooth replacement. And research shows that when placed by an experienced specialist, implants have a success rate of 98 percent. For replacement teeth that can last a lifetime, an oral surgeon is the professional to see.

Are you interested in dental implant placement? If you live in Richmond or the greater east central Indiana area, contact our office and schedule an oral surgery consultation today!