Facial Surgery: Purpose & Procedure

What is facial surgery?

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There are several reasons why you might require facial surgery. It might be needed to repair an injury such as broken bones in the face, or for orthodontic purposes, to correct problems with the way your face and jaw joints relate to each other.

When is facial surgery necessary?

Facial surgery, or maxillofacial surgery is sometimes needed to repair injuries after trauma, such as you might suffer in a car accident, a serious fall, or another kind of accident. Surgery moves the bones back into the right position and helps fractures and breaks heal more completely.

Your orthodontist might also suggest surgery to restructure the jawbone to correct severe misalignment issues. Your visit to the oral surgeon will generally precede other orthodontic treatment like braces. Extraction of impacted wisdom teeth is also considered maxillofacial surgery. If the wisdom teeth have not emerged, an oral surgeon will have to remove them from the sockets, which is more complex than a simple extraction. Or you might visit an oral surgeon to have dental implants placed.

Facial Surgery Procedures

Facial surgery is usually performed either under general anesthetic or under local anesthetic with added sedation. You and your oral surgeon will decide which approach is better for your individual needs and situation. If you require general anesthetic, your oral surgeon will provide you with instructions to prepare for your procedure. This might include fasting before your appointment. If you are going to have oral sedation, you’ll probably get a prescription for a sedative pill, which you’ll take before your appointment. Other forms of sedation, such as nitrous oxide or intravenous sedation, will not require this type of preparation.

You’ll also receive aftercare instructions, which you should follow closely to help yourself heal after your surgery. This will include prescriptions for antibiotics and painkillers. Other instructions will probably include:

  • Rest for a day or two
  • Use heat or cold to reduce swelling
  • Eat soft foods for a period of time

Take good care of yourself after your surgery, and soon you’ll be back to normal with damage to your face repaired, or with your teeth ready for your next treatment. If you have more questions, call our office at Oral Facial Surgery today!