Dentoalveolar surgery

Dentoalveolar surgery


Dentoalveolar surgery is a wide range of surgical techniques that deals with pathology of the teeth, gums and the jawbone that surrounds and supports the teeth (called “alveolar” bone). Your OMFS surgeon will be able to perform most of these procedures under local anesthetic.

Dentoalveolar surgery includes dealing with:

  • Wisdom teeth
  • Dental implants (add link to the other section of the site)
  • Difficult extractions of teeth or retained roots
  • Cysts and other pathology of the jaw bone
  • Pre-prosthetic surgery
  • Apicectomy
  • Orthodontic extractions/exposures

Prior to any of these procedures, your OMFS surgeon will take a full medical history, record your medications and discuss the details of the procedure with you. Remember to mention to your surgeon if you are pregnant or lactating, as some of the investigations (i.e. x-rays) cannot be done during pregnancy. These procedures are usually carried out under local anesthetic.

Instructions for having a dentoalveolar procedure under local anesthetic

Pre-operative advice:

  • The local anesthetic you will be having, is similar to the one given by your dentist
  • Eat and drink as normal, DO NOT FAST
  • Avoid smoking, especially after the procedure
  • Bring a list of your medications on the day and take your medications as regular, unless your OMFS surgeon has instructed otherwise
  • If you take a spray for angina or inhalers (i.e. for asthma) YOU MUST bring them with you
  • Don’t forget to inform your OMFS surgeon if you are on any anticoagulants or if you have a recent illness/feeling unwell.

Post-operative instructions:

  • Your face will be significantly swollen after the procedure – this will be worse on days 2-3 following the treatment. This is normal, and it should slowly resolve within a week
  • Pain, discomfort and difficulty in opening your mouth are common; please take painkillers as instructed by your OMFS surgeon. Take pain relief before the anesthetic wears off.
  • Blood stain saliva is normal and might continue for 1-2 days
  • Do not spit or rinse vigorously on the day of surgery
  • Ice packs used immediately after the procedure can reduce the risk of swelling
  • Do not strain or exercise on the day of surgery
  • If you see bleeding from the site of the procedure, roll a swab, place it on the wound and bite for 15 minutes
  • Have soft diet on the day of surgery
  • Keep your mouth VERY clean by brushing your teeth as usual. The day after of the procedure, start rinsing your mouth with a warm salt-water mouthwash. Wash after every meal and aim for 4-5 times a day for a week.
  • To make the salt-water mouthwash, dissolve half a tea spoon of salt in warm water (not hot) and use it to rinse
  • Do not smoke
  • Your sutures are dissolvable and they will fall out within 7-14 days
  • Contact your OMFS surgeon for any of the following
    • Continuous bleeding
    • Pus coming from the wound in the mouth
    • Fever, malaise, feeling unwell
    • Increasing swelling that persists over 5 days since your treatment
    • Extremely limited mouth opening that gets worse