For patients, dental surgery is one of those things that falls between what most people consider a “real” surgery and an extended dental appointment. The reality is, a dental surgery is just as much a surgery as any other body operation. To that end, most people have never considered they should actually prepare for an oral surgery, taking certain steps to ensure you are ready for this process and to help your body heal during and after the procedure.
Our Vista dental office will take all the time you need to make sure you understand everything about the surgery and how each step is important to the healing process. Some things we will ask you to do are not recommendations, so it is important that you follow the instructions. Doing otherwise can cause unnecessary complications, which can interfere with the success of the dental surgery or even put your overall health at risk.
Before dental surgery, the patient needs to take some time to go over the details of the procedure to the dentist. The patient can use this time to ask and questions. We want the patient to know what we are doing and for the patient to be completely comfortable going into the surgery. As such, if the patient has any fears or anxieties, it is a good time to address these with the oral surgeon.
We always recommend that patients talk to the oral surgeon about sedation or distraction methods at the appointment before the actual dental surgery. This way, the patient has an opportunity to make key decisions outside of the stress or anxiety before the process.
When it comes to going home after the surgery, the level and intensity of the anesthesia the patient has will affect the ability to drive. Most people need a ride home, so we recommend that the patient makes these arrangements before coming in. The patient needs to arrange for someone to come in, stay during the treatment and then take the patient home after.
This will give the patient the peace of mind of having someone around and will also allow us to release the patient earlier. If the patient does not have these arrangements, then he or she may have to wait for the effects of the anesthesia to wear off before returning home.
When you are going to have an oral surgery, you need to stay on a strict fast before the process. Your oral surgeon will tell you how long you need to be off food before the dental surgery. It is rarely advisable to have a large meal, or any meal, up to eight hours before your surgery. In some cases, you may be able to have something light to eat one to two hours before the process. Check with your surgeon for the exact restrictions that apply to your particular circumstances. Do not smoke or drink alcohol for at least 12 hours before any dental surgery.