The American Dental Association defines maxillofacial and oral surgery as the specialty of dentistry dedicated to the diagnosis, surgery, and adjunctive treatment of various deformities and illnesses of the mouth, jaws, and face for both aesthetic and functional aspects.
Maxillofacial and oral surgeons are trained to remedy all health problems that may affect the jaw, mouth, facial and neck structures. Common problems that can be corrected with oral and maxillofacial surgery include cleft palates, rebuilding injured jaws, noses, cheeks, foreheads, and eye sockets. Whether an injury or deformity in the oral and maxillofacial region arose from a birth defect or an accident, maxillofacial and oral surgery is the leading option. It excels in correcting such problems, including complex tumors and non-recoverable wisdom teeth removal.
How do oral and maxillofacial surgeons stand out from orthodontists?
Maxillofacial and oral surgeons are special in the dentistry field, which is founded in their training. First, they undergo four years of in-depth training in dental studies. Following that, they proceed to a residency program designed for dental surgery for 4-6 years.
Additionally, they are trained in emergency medical techniques, anesthesiology, and general surgery. Thus, they are highly qualified to administer all forms of sedation during surgery.
Dr. Christopher Johnson is a professionally trained D.M.D. with more than a decade of unparalleled experience in maxillofacial and oral surgery. His background in the field of dentistry includes undergraduate and post-graduate training. In his 6 years of post-graduate training in a hospital-based program, he attained certification for the oral surgery practice. He continues to deliver patient-centered care to all clients he interacts with.
If you are researching candidates to perform oral and maxillofacial surgery, rest assured that you are under the care of an experienced and highly-qualified oral surgeon in Dr. Christopher Johnson, D.M.D. However, like any other health service, it is critical to be well informed. When considering the various options available in maxillofacial and oral surgery, consider asking questions.
Here are the most frequently asked questions when considering oral and maxillofacial surgery:
What procedures are performed by maxillofacial and oral surgeons?
- Tooth Extraction. Most dental problems are corrected with this procedure, especially for impacted wisdom teeth, which form in positions that hinder their growth or make biting difficult. The surgeon simply removes the impacted wisdom teeth, and the procedure involves the use of sedation dentistry techniques.
- Cleft lip or palate surgery. This involves the correction of deformities in facial structure stemming from a birth defect.
- Corrective Jaw Surgery. It involves the correction of misaligned teeth, that are beyond orthodontics. In addition, severe orthodontic problems such as skeletal defects arising from congenital abnormalities are treated with this procedure. The orthognathic surgery is performed under general anesthesia and the result targets reshaping and repositioning misaligned teeth and jaws.
- Dental Implants. The procedure is used as a foundation for restorative and cosmetic dental work. However, it varies depending on the nature of the problem. For example, bone grafting may be used to repair deformed jaws, enabling permanent replacement teeth to be fastened to the jaw bone itself. This is done to ensure smooth and comfortable reshaping for the comfortable fitting of implants in the mouth.
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons provide care to relieve disruptive breathing during rest through surgical correction of misaligned jaws. This can alleviate restlessness and shortness of breath during sleep.
- Cosmetic Facial Surgery. The procedure is based on facial reconstruction techniques to correct skin, muscle, bone, and cartilage defects to deliver the desired aesthetic or facial function.
What is the Board certification for maxillofacial and oral surgeons?
The American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery certify Leesburg surgeons practicing maxillofacial and oral surgery in Central Florida. This is the highest credential for specialists offering oral and maxillofacial surgical services.
While an oral and maxillofacial surgeon can offer these services without the certification, certified practitioners are highly qualified, bring a wealth of experience, and proven excellence in their work.
As a result, quality healthcare providers prefer board-certified practitioners and insurance companies require board certification to collaborate with a dental services provider.
Is consultation separate from treatment or given at once?
Patients are examined and treated on the same day, especially in cases of tooth extraction and minor problems. However, for complex problems such as misaligned jaws, consultation is done first, and the surgical intervention is scheduled for a later date.
How long does the recovery from oral and maxillofacial surgery take?
After treatment, it is possible to return go back to a normal routine after 3 or 4 days of rest if only a minor surgery was administered. However, if the treatment involved a complex surgery, it will take a longer period for the body to heal and accommodate a normal work routine.
The extraction sockets in the jaw close in 6 weeks’ time. However, it takes several months for the body to fill up the sockets with bone. It is important to clean the sockets with a water syringe to prevent damage by food, which might be trapped in the area.
How much does a dental implant cost?
On average, a single dental implant costs between $1000 and $3000. However, the total cost of oral implants varies depending on whether the payment is from insurance coverage or out of pocket.
What exactly is a jaw reconstruction?
Complex jaw problems, which hinder proper breathing, biting, chewing, and speaking are corrected with orthognathic surgery, in which the jaws are reshaped and realigned. With the use of braces, this can take between 9 to 24 months. The procedure may be administered in either an outpatient or an in-patient setting.
How many years do dental implants last?
Dental implants are an excellent choice for replacement of deformed or missing teeth. With good dental hygiene and proper maintenance, dental implants last up to 5 years or beyond. To extend the lifespan of dental implants, it is critical to undergo regular check-ups at least twice annually.
What are the chances of a dental implant failure from maxillofacial and oral surgery?
With the groundbreaking advances in dental implant technology, cases of implant failures from rejection or functionality issues have been virtually eliminated over the years. Preexisting conditions are the primary factor that may cause an implant to fail.
Modern dental implants are made of three major components, the implant, abutment, and the crown, which offer failsafe functionality in the long-term. The implant, made of titanium, is placed precisely on the jawbone by the oral surgeon. It acts as the root of the artificial tooth. The abutment is attached to the implant to hold the crown in position. The crown is a ceramic tooth bolted to the abutment, whose function and appearance is that of a natural tooth. However, dental implants need care like normal teeth, such as flossing and brushing, to prevent damage.
When is the right time to replace an old dental implant?
Under proper oral care and maintenance, a dental implant may never be replaced. Exceptions include if it becomes loose or develops an infection. An oral exam from a qualified orthodontist or maxillofacial and oral surgery specialist can help determine if the dental implant is still healthy and functional or in need of replacement.
Dr. Christopher Johnson, D.M.D., is a leading oral and maxillofacial surgeon specialist practicing in Leesburg, Central Florida. If you are interested in learning more about cosmetic facial procedures, orthognathic surgery, oral and maxillofacial surgery, or other oral surgery procedures, call 352-728-6600 to set up a free consultation regarding the available options for your treatment.