Oral surgery means a surgical procedure performed in or around your mouth and jaw. It’s usually performed by a dentist with specialized surgical training or by an oral surgeon.
At Manteca Dental Care in Manteca, California, Dr. Rick Van Tran and his staff perform surgical procedures for issues ranging from tooth extractions to impacted wisdom teeth to root canals and dental implants. Because an informed patient makes a good patient, the staff wants you to know what’s expected of you prior to your oral surgery.
You prepare for oral surgery in the same way you prepare for any serious medical procedure. If the dentist has given you pre-op instructions, make sure you follow them to the letter.
Preparation starts long before your appointment time.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. Tran to ensure you understand what the problem is and why the procedure is necessary. Find out about the risks and benefits of what you’re having done. And don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions; knowledge is power.
If you’re getting any kind of sedation for the procedure, including nitrous oxide, you’ll need someone to drive you home. Anesthesia stays in your system for a number of hours and can impair your judgment, which makes it unsafe for you to be behind the wheel. Ask a friend, neighbor, or family member if they can help.
If you’re going to be sedated, you can’t eat or drink anything, even water, from midnight before until the procedure is through. This reduces your risk of a rare but serious complication of anesthesia called aspiration, which fills the lungs with your stomach contents. If you have to take medication during your fast, you can do so with a small sip of water.
Start by making sure that your house is clean and neat, so you'll be comfortable for a couple of days, if necessary, while you recover. Stock your shelves and fridge with soft foods, as you probably won’t be able to chew for a bit. And prop some pillows up on your bed so you can lie with your head elevated; that helps eliminate fluid retention and swelling.
If you’re going to be sedated for your procedure, try to wear short sleeves. It helps the nurses put a blood pressure cuff on your arm to monitor you during surgery and set up your IV for the sedation.
You’ll want to have a container with you to store any dentures, partials, or removable bridgework you might have during the procedure. Also bring a folder or envelope to keep all the necessary paperwork together.
On the day of your procedure, arrive at least 20 minutes before your appointment. This gives you time to complete any last-minute paperwork and ask any final questions. It also gives you a chance to relax before the surgery.
Want more tips? Need to have a procedure done? Manteca Dental Care can take care of all your dental needs. Give us a call at 209-823-9218 to schedule an evaluation with Dr. Tran, or book online with us today.