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Recovering from Oral Surgery–Do’s and Don’ts

Do eat soft foods while recovering from oral surgery

While recovering from oral surgery, there are some simple things you can do to minimize discomfort and help your mouth heal more quickly. Avoid infection, and speed up your recovery with these do’s and don’ts in mind!

Let’s Start with the Do’s

Do eat soft foods while recovering from oral surgery

DO Get Plenty of Rest– Be sure to block off some time to take it easy at home after having your oral surgery. Your body can heal faster when you give it the best footing to do so! Also, keep your head propped up as much as you can to help reduce swelling and bleeding post surgery.

DO Take Prescribed Antibiotics– The last thing you want to deal with after your oral surgery is an infection. If your oral surgeon prescribed an antibiotic, be sure you take it as directed and finish the medication.

DO Use Ice Packs– Minimize swelling by applying ice packs to your face. Usually on 15 minutes, off 15 minutes does the trick.

DO Eat Soft Foods– You’ll want to adhere to a liquid or soft food diet for several days after your oral surgery. Think soup, smoothies (though you’ll want to skip the straw), mashed potatoes, and yogurt.

DO Take Cleanliness Seriously– About 24 hours after your oral surgery, rinse your mouth gently with warm salt water at least four times daily, and after each meal and snack. Make sure to wash away all bits of food around the surgery area. Your Ocoee Oral Surgery team will give you advice on how to do this properly.

DO Brush Your Teeth Gently– Don’t brush or floss teeth in the surgical area, but you will want to continue brushing and flossing the rest of your teeth. Just take an extra gentle approach to this as you’re healing.

DO Eat Healthy Foods– Vitamins A and C are important for the healing process. Be sure to eat foods like eggs, carrots, and sweet potatoes to help boost your body’s natural healing powers.

Gargling warm salt water helps heal the gums when recovering from oral surgery.

Now for the Don’ts

DON’T Over Do It!– Just to reiterate, rest is critical after any surgery, and oral surgery is no exception. Be sure you don’t overexert yourself post op. You’ll also want to avoid exercise for a few days after your surgery, as increased blood flow can cause blood clots in the mouth to become dislodged, inhibiting healing.

DON’T Eat Hot Foods– In the time directly after your oral surgery, your mouth will be numb. This numbness wears off at different rates for everyone, but the last thing you want to do is burn your mouth that’s already been through a great deal.

DON’T Smoke or Drink Alcohol– Just don’t do it, okay? Smoking and drinking alcoholic beverages can interrupt the healing process. Let your body do its thing without roadblocks.

DON’T Eat Hard/Crunchy Foods– For about 6 weeks post oral surgery, you’ll want to avoid overly hard or crunchy foods. Give your mouth adequate time to fully heal before reintroducing these foods into your diet.

If you follow these do’s and don’ts after your oral surgery, you should have a smooth and speedy recovery. Of course, don’t hesitate to reach out to our office staff at Ocoee with any questions or concerns, and be sure to contact us if you have a fever that lasts more than 24 hours post surgery, experience throbbing pain that doesn’t subside with medication, or have excessive bleeding. We’ll take great care of you!

Surgically Assisted Tooth Eruption– What to Know Before Your Oral Surgery

Impacted teeth sometimes need coaxing for them to erupt, and our Cleveland oral surgeons can help with a procedure called surgically assisted tooth eruption.

Let’s be real. For many of us, a lot goes into having perfectly straight teeth. Even before the braces can go on, lots of mouths require special attention in preparation for the journey that is orthodontics. Sometimes crowding must be mitigated with tooth extractions, and sometimes impacted teeth even require some coaxing before they will grow in. This is most common with the canines or eyeteeth, and sometimes requires a procedure called surgically assisted tooth eruption. This sounds pretty intense, but it’s really not as scary when you choose the right oral surgeon.

Impacted teeth sometimes need coaxing for them to erupt, and our Cleveland oral surgeons can help with a procedure called surgically assisted tooth eruption.

What is an impacted tooth?

An impacted tooth is one that has not erupted, or fails to fully pass through the gum tissue. This can be a result of many things like dense soft tissue, bone, cysts, or tooth malposition. If the tooth fails to emerge in the mouth, it is considered to be impacted.

What is Surgically Assisted Tooth Eruption?

With or without necessary spacing, some teeth, particularly the canines or eyeteeth, may be impacted so much so that they will not erupt without assistance from an oral surgeon. With combined efforts, Dr. McCord and the Cleveland TN Ocoee Oral Surgery staff can surgically assist in tooth eruption, exposure, and bonding for your individual treatment and oral care. And it’s not as scary as it may sound.

What is tooth exposure?

Tooth exposure is a simple surgical procedure where the gum is lifted from the impacted tooth to expose the covered tooth, assisting the tooth’s eruption. If a baby tooth is still present, it can easily be removed during the procedure. Exposing the tooth makes it eligible for an orthodontic bracket to be attached, which can then be used to slowly encourage the tooth as it comes down and moves into place.

How long does impacted canine surgery take?

This oral surgery procedure is fairly non-invasive and generally takes anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. After anesthesia is administered and/or the area is numbed, your Cleveland oral surgeon will remove a small piece of gum tissue to uncover the impacted tooth.

Impacted canines or eyeteeth can be gently pulled down with an orthodontic attachment after oral surgery.

What to expect after surgery:

After your impacted tooth is uncovered, it is normal to have some minor bleeding in the first 12 to 24 hours. You should also expect moderate pain and discomfort for 2 to 3 days after the procedure, which can be controlled with over-the-counter pain relievers. Infection, though uncommon, can develop in the days following surgery, and if you suspect that you’re experiencing symptoms of an infection, get in touch with us at Ocoee Oral so we can treat it. But all in all, just rest and let your body do the healing!

Schedule an Appointment

If you or your child has been advised by an orthodontist to have a tooth uncovered by surgically assisted tooth eruption, we’d love to take care of you. Our skilled staff can answer any questions about the procedure, and will do whatever it takes to ease your mind about it. Our incredible oral surgeons are up to the task, and are among the best in the Cleveland and Chattanooga areas. Get in touch today to set up an appointment. We look forward to serving you.

Wisdom Teeth Coming In?

Even if you have impacted wisdom teeth, wisdom teeth extraction is something you should talk with your dentist about.

Things You Never Knew about Wisdom Teeth

Maybe your wisdom teeth are coming in, or maybe you’ve already been through the process of wisdom tooth extraction– but either way, there are probably some interesting facts about wisdom teeth you never knew! We’ll explore a few of the most entertaining, for kicks.

1) Number of Wisdom Teeth Varies Person To Person

As strange as it may be, the number of wisdom teeth each person has varies. Some folks have all four, and some have none at all. Most often, adults have four wisdom teeth, one in each quadrant of the mouth, but in some rare cases, people even have more than four. In the case of Hyperdontia, the human mouth can host supernumerary teeth, or teeth that exist in addition to the regular line up. (Do not Google this if you’re squeamish.)

If your wisdom teeth are coming in, there are a few things you should know about them!

2) Number of Roots the Teeth Have Varies

Another thing that varies case to case is the number of roots each wisdom tooth has. Just like a fingerprint, everyone’s teeth are unique. Though wisdom teeth generally have two or three roots, they can have more. The roots of the teeth form first, then pushing the bud of each tooth through the gums as they erupt. Some wisdom teeth have as many as five roots.

3) Wisdom Teeth Can Come In Any Time

Though most people’s wisdom teeth come in around their late teens or early twenties, these crazy little third-molars can actually make their appearance at any time. In some cases, the wisdom teeth are impacted, or they don’t grow in at all, but you’ll still want to discuss removal with your dentist, even so. According to the Guinness World Records, the oldest person to grow a wisdom tooth was almost 95 years old! His record-shattering tooth was detected during a regular dental exam.

4) They’re Called “Love Teeth” In Korean

Fun fact: the Korean word for wisdom teeth translates more closely to “love teeth.” The reason for this is that by the time your wisdom teeth emerge, you are likely to have experienced your first crush or your first love. Kinda precious, right? We certainly think so.

5) Wisdom Teeth Don’t Serve Any Purpose

It’s interesting that our wisdom teeth don’t serve a purpose anymore, and haven’t for thousands and thousands of years. Our ancestors ate raw meat, roots and other foraged foods, and they needed the wisdom teeth to adequately masticate the types of things that comprised their diets. These teeth aren’t just pointless though, they are also pretty precarious. They have the potential to cause a lot of pain and ongoing damage if left neglected. If you haven’t had your wisdom teeth examined or extracted, you ought to consider a conversation about it. Feel free to reach out to us at Ocoee Oral Surgery with any concerns or questions you may have. We are the Chattanooga area wisdom teeth experts.

Periodontal Disease Treatment: Bone Grafts for Dental Implants

Periodontal Disease Treatment

Periodontal Disease Treatment for Dental Implants

We perform an oral surgical procedure for Periodontal Disease Treatment, the Bone Graft, which serves to regenerate bone growth that has been lost as a result of the body’s immune system fighting bacterial infections. This month’s blog is dedicated to educating readers about the dangers of gum disease in the hope that you will understand the importance of taking care for your teeth and gums every day before the damage is done and bone must be grafted to allow for the possibility of future dental implants.

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TMJ: Break These Bad Habits

Cleveland TMJ pain jaw discomfort

Cleveland TMJ pain jaw discomfortExperiencing temporomandibular joint pain? You might have TMJ. The symptoms can be identified when the joints of the jaw and muscles do not work together correctly. Since some types of TMJ can lead to more serious conditions, prevention and early detection is key. If you are experiencing minor jaw pain, here are three bad habits that you can break today to prevent any longterm TMJ disorders from occurring or worsening.

  1. Biting your nails
  2. Overworking (anxiety and stress)
  3. Control caffeine consumption

Bad habits, even if believed to be innocent, may actually be affecting your health. For example, if you have one or more of these bad habits, you may be creating the root of the problem.

1. Biting Nails: Biting your fingernails exercises the jaw to work in an unnatural way. This anxiety-induced habit can aggravate and cause jaw discomfort, which in most cases, leads to TMJ

Looking for ways to quit biting your nails? Here are some tips!

  • Paint your nails using a nail polish.
  • Keep nails trimmed short.
  • Recruit the help of friends and family to bring attention to the habit.

2. Grinding Teeth or Clenching Jaw: This common habit is often found in patients who experience higher levels of stress and anxiety; this can result in clenching or grinding, both conscious or unconscious.

Looking for ways to quit grinding your teeth? Here are some tips!

  • Acknowledge and manage your stress and anxiety levels.
  • Wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth and jaw.
  • Periodically reposition your tongue between teeth to relax the jaw.

Cut the Caffeine : With all the possibilities that may cause TMJ flareups, caffeine might just be the hardest to give up for the majority of patients. So what does caffeine have to do with TMJ? Essentially the chemical reaction that creates alertness winds up your nervous system, which can worsen already aggravated tissues in the head, neck and jaw.

Looking for ways to cut the caffeine? Here are some tips!

  • Don’t give up your morning cup of coffee – just switch to decaf.
  • Trade your coffee pot for a tea kettle. Drinking green tea is a natural energizer, while also providing a plethora of antioxidants and nutrients.

If you’re experiencing consistent jaw pain, it may be time to make an appointment with Ocoee Oral Surgery of Cleveland, TN. Schedule an appointment today to learn more about TMJ and our available treatment options for you.