Expert Oral Surgeons Collaborate with General Practice Dentists

November 13, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Expert oral surgeons: oral & maxillofacial surgeons

While almost all dentists can do some oral surgery procedures – many cosmetic dentistry procedures as well as dental extractions (including wisdom teeth), dental implants, root canals and a range of other procedures – are safer and more successful in the hands of oral surgeon experts known as oral & maxillofacial surgeons.

Complicated dental procedures like third molar impactions, maxillofacial fractures and implants certainly require the expert technical knowhow of oral and maxillofacial surgeons. General dentists usually examine and diagnose patients and then refer them to oral and maxillofacial surgeons for complicated surgical procedures.

At present, there is a critical shortage of trained oral and maxillofacial surgeons

According the U.S. Senate Committee on Health Education Labor & Pensions, there is a shortage of trained oral and maxillofacial surgeons.

To utilize their skills fully, almost all oral and maxillofacial surgeons work at hospitals as they require medical and surgical facilities like OTs, surgical support staff, anesthesiologists, emergency medical equipment and materials. In fact, the shortage of oral and maxillofacial surgeons is particularly critical with only 0.03 oral and maxillofacial surgeons available for about every 100,000 people.

General dentist referrals

General dentists are far more plentiful and usually have a community-based practice where different types of patients and cases come for treatment. A general dentist will evaluate and treat simple surgical procedures or call in oral and maxillofacial surgeons to treat the complicated cases.

This works to the benefit of the patient, general dentist and oral and maxillofacial surgeons in several ways:

  • General dentists can easily refer patients to oral and maxillofacial surgeons
  • Oral surgeons can begin with an evaluation and x-rays provided by the general dentist
  • Further expert evaluation of the patient can be performed prior to the surgery
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgeons can ensures that the treatment is completed quickly by not having to repeat what a general dentist has already done
  • Oral and maxillofacial surgeons do not always need to spend post-operative time on each patient after the oral reconstructive surgery procedure as general dentists can often complete critical aftercare or follow-up procedures (like suture removal wound debridement, irrigation, etc.)

• Dental patients are reassured through proper communication and proper treatment by their dental physicians each within their areas of expertise and the fact that the physicians are working together.

Three-way benefits

As you can see, the benefits go three-ways with the patient, the dentists and the oral surgeon benefiting from a dental team approach to patient care. In the near future, oral & maxillofacial surgeons and general dentists working together could turn out to be the most profitable and efficient treatment protocol for patients and dentists as well.

Oral & Maxillofacial surgeons of Houston (OMSH) specializes in dental implants and are known as the leaders for Houston dental implants. We are proud to work regularly for the good of our patients with Houston dentists.