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Oral and maxillofacial surgery involves surgical procedures performed in the areas of the head, face, neck and jaw. These surgeries are recognised specialties of highly-trained dental surgeons and can be used to treat a range of conditions affecting these areas.
In this month’s Treatment Spotlight, we’re taking a look at what oral surgery is used for and how this type of surgery can help to treat oral and other health conditions.
Oral and maxillofacial surgery is a specialist area of surgery focusing on reconstructive surgery of the face, facial trauma surgery, the oral cavity, head and neck, mouth and jaws, as well as facial cosmetic surgery.
All Dentists can perform some oral surgery, however in Australia an additional three to six years of training is required to qualify as an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, and some are dual qualified (also trained as a medical doctor). Qualified specialist oral surgeons carry out the more complicated procedures, usually in a hospital setting.
When wisdom teeth emerge, it’s common for them to become impacted, which means there is not enough space for the tooth to come through correctly. Impacted wisdom teeth can cause swelling, pain and infection of the gum tissue surrounding the tooth, as well as risking permanent damage to surrounding teeth and gums.
Oral surgery is used to remove impacted wisdom teeth, or any tooth that becomes impacted and poses a problem for your mouth.
Dental implants are often used to replace missing teeth following an accident or infection. Implants act as substitutes for the tooth root and are surgically anchored to the jawbone, in order to stabilise the artificial tooth to which they attach.
Oral surgery can be used in the treatment of a range of jaw-related issues, including:
The following are some of the conditions which may require oral or maxillofacial surgery:
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