It can be defined as the medical study of the mouth and its diseases, unlike dentistry is dedicated to the observation and treatment of diseases.
Intended to treat infections, problems throughout the system surrounding the denture, ie the mouth itself as a whole.
Stomatologic surgery deals with the extraction of very diseased teeth that can not be saved with another type of treatment extraction of root remains.
Also extraction of roots or teeth enclosed or semi-embedded in the jaw as the wisdom tooth in disodontiasis; frenectomy; alveoloplasty; surgical extirpation of the apex of the tooth caused by infections when it is not treatable with endodontics ; elimination of cysts and neoplasia of the oral cavity.
Depending on a prosthesis-implant, it may be necessary to raise the sinus floor by grafting biocompatible material (autologous or heterologous bone, platelet-derived growth factor, etc.).
Stomatology can also refer to the extraction of healthy teeth in the case of “dental crowding” (the case in which the total width of the teeth is greater than the width of the same arch) or to the objective of a correct orthodontic treatment.
Who practices it?
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are unique among dental specialists in several ways. After completing four years of dental school, they spent another four years in a hospital residency program for surgery.
There, they train together with other medical residents in the techniques of emergency medicine, general surgery and anesthesiology. In fact, they are the only specialists in medical care (apart from anesthesiologists) who can administer all levels of sedation, up to general anesthesia.
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons focus on treating problems related to the hard and soft tissues of the face, mouth and jaws (the upper jaw is known as the maxilla).
While they sometimes work in a hospital, their practices are most often located in comfortable office environments.
The general dentist can refer you to one of these specialists for a complex dental extraction. Or, your orthodontist may send you for an exam if you suspect a problem with the alignment of your jaws.
It is not necessary for an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to perform all types of oral surgery; Many dentists are experts in the most common procedures, such as simple extractions.
However, for complex treatments that may require more invasive procedures or deeper levels of sedation, these specialists may be recommended.
What kind of procedures are suitable to perform?
Dental extractions are possibly the most common procedure performed by oral surgeons.
Patients often refer to these specialists when the wisdom teeth are affected, that is, they form in a position where they can not erupt or grow properly in the bite.
Generally, minor surgery is required to remove the impacted wisdom teeth, and is generally recommended even if the impacted teeth are not (yet) producing any symptoms.
Fortunately, this procedure is routine, and is often performed in the dental office using sedation dentistry techniques.
Corrective jaw ( orthognathic ) surgery is sometimes needed when orthodontics is not enough to correct a misaligned bite.
In other cases, surgical treatment is necessary to repair congenital anomalies (congenital defects) or to treat serious orthodontic conditions, skeletal problems and other disorders.
In this procedure, generally performed under general anesthesia, the bones of the face and jaw can be reshaped and repositioned, and the jaws and teeth realigned.
Oral surgeons often work closely with orthodontists in planning and performing this type of surgery, which may be necessary when orthodontics alone can not correct the problem.
Cleft lip / palate surgery is a special type of surgery that oral and maxillofacial surgeons often perform to correct changes in facial structure caused by this congenital defect.
Reconstructive surgery may be necessary after a traumatic dental injury or facial trauma, which can be the result of a car accident, an injury in the workplace and many other causes.
This surgery is also sometimes necessary after the removal of a tumor or other operation.
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons specialize in the repair and reconstruction of facial structures, and are experts in working with soft and hard tissues.
These specialists can also establish a solid foundation for cosmetic and restorative dental work, including the placement of dental implants, the preferred tooth replacement system for many patients.
Depending on the condition of the jaw, bone grafting procedures may be required for proper placement of the implants in the jaw.
When dentures are the chosen dental replacement method, oral surgeons can smooth and reshape the alveolar bone (jaw) as needed to ensure a comfortable fit in the mouth.
In addition to these common procedures, oral and maxillofacial surgeons can be consulted to consult cases of obstructive sleep apnea, facial pain and infection, biopsies and removal of lesions, and diagnosis and treatment of some oral cancers.
The extensive clinical experience that these specialists provide to their patients can provide help when it is most needed.