# Oral surgeon

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Dental Specialists

There are various dental specialities. Dental specialists often deal with the more difficult cases within their own particular discipline. I’ll give a brief outline of some of the more common ones-

Orthodontists: Straighten teeth. Braces tend to be fixed in place but sometimes a removable brace can do the job for more straightforward problems. 12-16 is a good time to consider a referral but people can have orthodontics at any age.

Endodontists: Specialise in doing root canal treatment. This is a more complicated filling that is done to save a tooth when the nerve is dead or about to die. We would often refer a patient to an endodontist if the tooth looks to have a particularly difficult root or roots to fill.

Paedodontists: Specialise in dentistry for children. This can be very useful if there are any major problems at any early age.They can often save teeth that would otherwise be removed. Saving baby teeth helps to align the adult teeth as they erupt. They are also a great option for children who are very nervous about visiting the dentist.

Sedation: Dentistry can be performed under sedation for nervous patients. Dr Lyndsey McTavish can perform a large range of dental treatment under  nitous oxide or iv sedation at our practice.

Oral Surgeon: Often perform the most difficult extractions e.g complicated lower wisdom teeth. They are a good option if someone needs a lot of extractions. They also specialise in implant work . We have an Oral Surgeon, Eimear McHugh who works in our practice in Swords. She can also offer iv sedation as an option for difficult cases.

Periodontist: A dentist who specialises in the treatment of complicated gum treatment. They often work in conjunction with a dental hygienist who will perform a lot of the treatment as planned by the periodontist.

Oral Medicine: A speciality that deals with any medical conditions of the mouth. They often deal with neuralgia type pains which can be difficult to control.

Prosthodontist: Someone who replaces missing teeth. This is often done with dentures or implants (or dentures on implants!).

If you do need a referral to any of these people you can come to the practice for a check up and we’ll organise the rest:

www.swords-dental.ie

Dental Implants

Dental implants

Durable, long-lasting and natural in their appearance, dental implants are the most modern method of replacing missing teeth.

The procedure involves fitting an implant which is made of Titanium, into the bone of the jaw. It is important that we have enough bone in the area and that this bone is of good quality. If this is not the case, a procedure called bone augmentation can be used, to help build up the bone levels prior to the implant procedure.

We then allow time for the bone to heal and grow in around the implant. The implant can now hold a single false tooth, called an implant crown in place. This is generally the best way of replacing a missing tooth. Implants can also be used to hold multiple false teeth (an implant bridge) or to fix a full denture in place. An implant supported denture has advantages over a standard denture in that it can greatly increase the biting force. Also it won’t cover the roof of the mouth in the way that a traditional denture would.

Procedure time will depend on how many implants you’re having. It’s possible to have several implants fitted in the same procedure.

Dental implants are usually fitted under local anaesthesia. If you’re feeling nervous about the procedure we can arrange for you to have some sedation. Both nitrous oxide and intravenous sedation options are available.

At Swords Dental our implants are fitted by our specialist oral surgeon Dr Eimear McHugh. If you’re interested in making an appointment to discuss implants or for an implant assessment give us a call on 01 8401001.

www.swords-dental.ie

Wisdom Tooth Extractions

 

Wisdom tooth problems are extremely common. Wisdom teeth grow at the back of your gums and are the last teeth to come through. Most people have four wisdom teeth – one in each corner.Wisdom teeth usually grow through the gum during the late teens or early twenties. By this time, the other 28 adult teeth are usually in place, so there isn’t always enough room in the mouth for the wisdom teeth to grow properly. Because of the lack of space, the wisdom teeth can sometimes emerge at an angle or get stuck and only partially emerge. Wisdom teeth that grow through like this are known as impacted.

When to see a dentist?

You should make an appointment to see us if you’re experiencing severe pain or discomfort from your wisdom teeth. We will check your teeth and advise you on whether they need to be removed. If we think that this may be the case we’ll usually carry out an x-ray of your mouth. This gives them a clearer view of the position of your teeth. We often take full mouth (OPG) x-rays to help assess these problems. This can be done here at Swords Dental

Why are wisdom teeth removed?

Your wisdom teeth don’t usually need to be removed if they’re impacted but aren’t causing any problems. This is because there’s no proven benefit of doing this and it carries the risk of complications. Sometimes, wisdom teeth that have become impacted or haven’t fully broken through the surface of the gum can cause dental problems. Food and bacteria can get trapped around the edge of the wisdom teeth, causing a build-up of plaque, which can lead to:

  • Tooth Decay (dental caries) – this develops when plaque begins to break down the surface of your tooth. When tooth decay becomes more advanced, it leaves holes (cavities) in the tooth, which can affect the surrounding teeth.
  • Gum Disease (also called gingivitis or periodontal disease) – this occurs when plaque releases toxins that irritate your gums, making them red, swollen and painful. Gum disease can also affect the surrounding teeth and the bone around the wisdom teeth.
  • Pericoronitis – when plaque causes an infection of the soft tissue that surrounds the tooth.
  • Abscess – when pus collects in your wisdom teeth or the surrounding tissue due to a bacterial infection.

Many of these problems can be treated with treatment such as antibiotics and a mouthwash (such as Corsodyl), so removing your wisdom teeth is only recommended when other treatment hasn’t worked.

How wisdom teeth are removed

We may decide remove your wisdom teeth at the practice or  refer you to a specialist surgeon. We have a specialist oral surgeon here at the practice on Thursdays, Dr Eimear McHugh.  She has the option of removing the tooth  in the standard way using local anaesthetic or using an intravenous sedation in more complicated cases. We can also arrange a general anaesthetic in a hospital, if necessary.

Before the procedure, you’ll usually be given an injection to numb the area around the tooth. You’ll feel some pressure just before the tooth is removed, to widen the tooth socket by rocking the tooth back and forth. In some cases a cut may be needed in your gum, and the tooth may need to be cut into smaller pieces before it’s removed. The time it takes to remove the tooth will vary. Some procedures only take a few minutes, whereas others can take 20 minutes or longer.

After your wisdom teeth have been removed, you may experience swelling and discomfort, both on the inside and outside of your mouth. This is usually worse for the first three days, but it can last for up to two weeks. We will recommend or prescribe painkillers to help with this.

 

Possible complications

As with all surgery, there are risks associated with removing a wisdom tooth. These include infection or delayed healing, both of which are more likely if you smoke during your recovery.

Another possible complication is “dry socket”, which is a dull, aching sensation in your gum or jaw, and sometimes a bad smell or taste coming from the empty tooth socket. Dry socket is more likely if you don’t follow the after-care instructions.

There’s also a small risk of nerve damage, which can cause pain or a tingling sensation and numbness in the tongue, lower lip, chin, teeth and gums. This is usually temporary, but can be permanent in some rare cases. We will assess this risk in detail prior to planning the procedure, to help ensure this risk is minimal.

If you need an appointment you can contact us at:

www.swords-dental.ie Tel 8401001