Dentistry is a vast subject encompassing many specialities within itself. Orthodontics, Prosthodontics, Periodontics, Pedodontics, Oral medicine and Radiology, Oral and Maxillofacial pathology, Endodontist, Public health dentist and the Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon. And if you have ever wondered what an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon ( OMFS ) does, then read on……………
Who Is an OMFS?
An OMFS is a specialised dentist who does complicated teeth removals, jaw fracture corrections, removal of cysts ( Infected fluid filled sacs in the mouth ) in your mouth, correction of TMJ dislocations, treating cancer of the mouth, placing tooth implants and many other surgeries in the head and neck area. This branch of dentistry is a fine blend of dental sciences and surgery. A dentist is trained in oral surgery as a post graduation subject.
When should you see an OMFS?
Your dentist will refer you to an OMFS if you will need any of these treatments
- Impacted and painful wisdom tooth removal
- Impacted teeth ( especially canines ) that have to be pulled out for a clip treatment
- Frenectomy ( Labial or lingual frenum )
- Removal of cysts in the mouth
- Reduction of jaw fractures
- Correction of the jaws for proper bite
- Removal of mesiodens ( Extra tooth in-between the upper front teeth )
- Swelling in the jaws because of an infection
- Pain in the TMJ ( This is a joint in front of your ear on both sides )
- Difficulty in opening the mouth. This can be because of SMF, Locked TMJ or jaw dislocation due to fracture
- Cleft lip and cleft palate in infants.
- When you need Implants
- Salivary gland problems
Why should you see an OMFS?
Your OMFS is very well trained to perform some of the surgical procedures in the face and neck. Surgeries in the face and neck can be classified as minor surgical procedures and major surgical procedures.
The minor surgical procedures include
- Painful and impacted wisdom tooth removal
- Releasing impacted canines for braces.
- Frenum correction
- Cyst removal
- Tmj correction for dislocation
- Correction of mouth opening in SMF
- Placing Implants.
The major surgical procedures are generally done under GA in the OT. These procedures include
- Jaw reduction in cases of fractures involved in road accidents or trauma
- Jaw adjustment to correct the bite
- Correcting jaw opening in fracture
- Cleft lip and cleft palate correction in infants
- Cosmetic surgery of the face
- Benign and malignant tumors of the jaw and neck.
Please talk to your dentist regarding your treatment plans. Your dentist will explain the procedures and give you the right guidance.