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7 Common Types of Oral Surgery

7 Common Types of Oral Surgery

Introduction to Oral Surgery

Oral surgery refers to any surgical procedure performed in or around the mouth and jaw area. These procedures are often necessary to treat various dental conditions that cannot be resolved with non-surgical treatments. Oral surgery is commonly performed by oral and maxillofacial surgeons, who are specially trained in this field. In this article, we will explore seven common types of oral surgery procedures and gain insights into their purposes, processes, and aftercare.

1. Wisdom Teeth Extraction

Why Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed

Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, usually emerge in late adolescence or early adulthood. However, due to the lack of space in the mouth, these teeth often become impacted, causing pain, swelling, and potential misalignment of neighboring teeth. As a result, the removal of wisdom teeth becomes necessary.

The Extraction Process

The process of removing impacted wisdom teeth begins with a thorough examination and X-rays to determine the tooth’s position. The surgeon then administers anesthesia to ensure a painless procedure. Following the extraction, proper aftercare is crucial to prevent complications and promote healing.

Recovery and Aftercare

After the surgery, patients may experience some swelling and discomfort. Following the dentist’s post-operative instructions, such as eating soft foods and maintaining proper oral hygiene, will aid in a smooth recovery.

2. Dental Implants

What are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are artificial tooth roots used to replace missing teeth. They provide a sturdy foundation for fixed or removable replacement teeth that match the natural teeth in both appearance and function.

The Procedure of Getting Dental Implants

The dental implant procedure involves the surgical placement of the implant into the jawbone. The healing process allows the implant to fuse with the bone, creating a stable base for the artificial tooth. Once the implant has integrated, a dental crown is placed on top.

Benefits and Risks

Dental implants offer numerous benefits, such as improved speech, enhanced chewing ability, and preservation of facial structure. However, risks such as infection and implant failure exist, emphasizing the importance of proper oral care post-surgery.

3. Root Canal Therapy

Understanding Root Canal Treatment

Root canal therapy is employed to save a severely infected or damaged tooth from extraction. The procedure involves removing the infected pulp, cleaning the interior of the tooth, and sealing it to prevent further infection.

Step-by-Step Procedure

The root canal procedure begins with X-rays to assess the tooth’s condition. The dentist then administers local anesthesia and drills an access hole to remove the pulp. Once cleaned, the tooth is filled and sealed, and a crown may be placed for added protection.

Aftercare and Recovery

Following root canal therapy, patients may experience mild discomfort, which can be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers. Maintaining good oral hygiene and attending regular dental check-ups will ensure the treated tooth remains healthy.

4. Jaw Surgery

Reasons for Jaw Surgery

Jaw surgery, also known as orthognathic surgery, is performed to correct various jaw-related issues, such as malocclusion (misalignment of the jaw), TMJ disorders, or sleep apnea.

The Surgical Procedure

Before the surgery, the oral surgeon uses advanced imaging technology to plan the procedure accurately. During the surgery, incisions are made inside the mouth to access the jawbone, allowing for adjustments to be made as needed. The incisions are then closed with dissolvable sutures.

Recovery and Healing

Post-surgery, patients may experience some swelling and discomfort, which can be managed with pain medication and a soft diet. Full recovery may take several weeks, during which follow-up appointments with the oral surgeon are essential.

5. Tooth Extractions

Common Reasons for Tooth Extractions

Tooth extractions are necessary when a tooth is severely decayed, damaged, or impacted. Additionally, individuals undergoing orthodontic treatment may require tooth extractions to create space for proper teeth alignment.

Types of Tooth Extractions

There are two types of tooth extractions: simple extractions, which involve removing a visible tooth, and surgical extractions, which are more complex and involve removing a partially or fully impacted tooth.

Post-Extraction Care

Following a tooth extraction, patients should follow their dentist’s aftercare instructions carefully to prevent complications such as dry socket and infection.

6. Gum Graft Surgery

Why Gum Graft Surgery is Performed

Gum graft surgery is employed to treat gum recession, a condition where the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth, leaving the tooth’s root exposed.

Different Gum Grafting Techniques

There are three main types of gum grafting procedures: connective tissue grafts, free gingival grafts, and pedicle grafts. Each technique addresses different levels of gum recession.

Recovery and Complications

After gum graft surgery, patients may experience mild discomfort and swelling. Adhering to the dentist’s post-operative instructions will promote successful healing and minimize the risk of complications.

7. Corrective Jaw (Orthognathic) Surgery

What is Orthognathic Surgery?

Orthognathic surgery aims to correct significant jaw irregularities that affect a person’s bite, speech, and facial aesthetics.

The Surgical Process

Before the surgery, detailed imaging is used to plan the procedure accurately. During the surgery, incisions are made to access the jawbone, allowing for precise adjustments. The incisions are then closed, and the healing process begins.

Recovery and Follow-up Care

Patients may experience swelling and discomfort after orthognathic surgery. It is essential to follow the surgeon’s instructions for post-operative care to achieve the desired results.


Oral surgery encompasses a range of procedures designed to address various dental issues and improve oral health. From wisdom teeth extraction to corrective jaw surgery, each procedure serves a specific purpose in enhancing the function and aesthetics of the mouth. If you are experiencing dental problems or have concerns about your oral health, consult with an oral surgeon to explore the best treatment options for your needs.


  1. Is oral surgery painful? Oral surgery is typically performed under anesthesia, so patients should not feel pain during the procedure. However, some discomfort and swelling may be experienced during the recovery period, which can be managed with pain medication.
  2. How long does it take to recover from oral surgery? The recovery period varies depending on the type of oral surgery performed. It can range from a few days to several weeks. Following the dentist’s aftercare instructions diligently will help expedite the healing process.
  3. Are there any risks associated with dental implants? Like any surgical procedure, dental implants carry some risks, such as infection, implant failure, or nerve damage. However, with proper care and regular check-ups, these risks can be minimized.
  4. Is jaw surgery only for cosmetic purposes? While orthognathic surgery can improve facial aesthetics, it is primarily performed to correct functional issues such as bite problems, speech difficulties, and TMJ disorders.
  5. Can I eat normally after gum graft surgery? Following gum graft surgery, it is advisable to stick to a soft diet for a few days. As the gums heal, gradually reintroduce firmer foods as recommended by the dentist.

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