Tag Archives: oral cancer

7 Reasons You Should See a Chattanooga Oral Surgeon

7 Reasons You Should See a Chattanooga Oral Surgeon

7 Reasons You Should See a Chattanooga Oral Surgeon

You know to see your dentist twice a year for cleanings and exams, but it may not be as clear when you should seek the services of a Chattanooga oral surgeon. It is likely that at some point your life circumstances will warrant a trip to the oral surgery office. Here are seven scenarios in which you absolutely should seek out the specialty care of a Chattanooga oral surgeon.

1– Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Most of us have at least some wisdom teeth, if not all four, and ultimately any dental professional will tell you you should have them removed. If wisdom teeth align properly with surrounding teeth and the neighboring gum tissue is healthy, they do not have to be removed; however, that does not generally occur. If you haven’t undergone wisdom teeth removal surgery, you should probably see an oral surgeon.

2– Impacted Tooth

An impacted tooth is one that has not erupted within the mouth, and this is often the case with wisdom teeth. Impacted teeth can take on many positions in the bone, and they will attempt to find paths by which to erupt successfully. This can be problematic for a number of reasons as they may grow sideways, partially emerge from the gums, or even stay trapped beneath the gums and jaw bone. Impacted teeth can cause all sorts of problems like pain, swelling, stiffness, and even infection, so they also warrant a visit with an oral surgeon.

3– Dental Implants

Another reason to visit an oral surgeon is the need for dental implants. Dental implants offer a permanent solution for missing or damaged teeth. For most patients, dental implant placement involves two surgical procedures. First, dental implants are placed within your jawbone. For the first three to six months following surgery, the dental implants are beneath the surface of the gums, allowing them time to bond with the jawbone. Then your surgeon will uncover the dental implants, and attach small posts to them to act as anchors for the artificial teeth. The entire process usually takes six to eight months; however, most patients experience little disruption in their daily lives.

4– Corrective Oral Surgery

Facial trauma is another reason you may need to see a Chattanooga oral surgeon for treatment. Facial trauma can include facial and lip lacerations, knocked out teeth, fractured facial bones, fractured upper and lower jaw bones, and more. In the event that you suffer a facial injury due to a sports or motor vehicle accident, work-related injury, or some other circumstance, you may need to be treated by an oral surgeon.

7 Reasons You Should See a Chattanooga Oral Surgeon

5– Surgically-Assisted Tooth Eruption

Some teeth are just stubborn and will not come in all on their own. If this happens to you or your child, you can seek treatment from an oral surgeon to uncover or expose the tooth and coax it into its proper place, usually with the help of an orthodontist. Tooth exposure is a simple surgical procedure in which the gum is lifted to uncover the impacted tooth, assisting its eruption. If there is still a baby tooth present, it will be removed at the same time.

6– TMJ Treatment

TMJ (Temporomandibular joint) disorders are a family of problems related to the complex jaw joint. Unpleasant symptoms can occur when the joints of the jaw and the surrounding chewing muscles fail to work together as they should. Since some types of TMJ problems can lead to more serious conditions, early detection and treatment is important. An oral surgeon can suggest avenues of treatment for TMJ such as the introduction of a mouthguard to help protect your teeth from excessive grinding and clenching, orthodontic braces to fix a problematic bite, and injections of Botox into the jaw muscles to help manage pain and promote relaxation.

7– Oral Pathology

Another reason to see an oral surgeon is if you think you may be exhibiting symptoms of oral cancer. Things to look for include sores that bleed easily and fail to heal, chronic sore throat or hoarseness, trouble swallowing or chewing, reddish or whitish patches in the mouth, and a lump or thickening on the skin lining the mouth. Any alterations in the appearance of the inside of the mouth could be an indication of an issue. Through our oral pathology services, our oral surgeons at Ocoee can help detect and diagnose these problems in office.

If you find yourself in need of oral surgery care, contact our team at Ocoee Oral Surgery today. We are accepting new patients, and no referral is necessary. We’d love to take care of you.

5 Ways to Self-Examine for Oral Cancer

Cleveland Oral Cancer Awareness

Cleveland Oral Cancer Awareness

5 ways to self-examine for oral cancer:

  • The Tongue ‘n Groove. Using a mirror, first, stick out your tongue and look for any unusual changes in bumps, lumps, or color. Most commonly darker spots. Move your tongue around from side to side to assess each surface. Next, touch the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth, as if making an “L” sound. This will help you examine the underside of your tongue and floor under the tongue. In a healthy mouth, these should be uniform in both texture and color.
  • Raise the Roof. Similarly, examine the roof of your mouth. This can easily be done by using a mirror and or feeling with your tongue or fingertips. For optimal viewing, tilt your head back slightly, as if you were to gargle mouthwash. Next, inspect the roof of your mouth for discoloration or changes in texture.
  • The Cheek Check. Graze your tongue or fingertip along the inside of your cheeks. Next gently pull cheeks outward for a visual inspection. If you notice white or red, dark-colored splotches, consult with your doctor. Finally, using a pinching motion, place your index finger inside and your thumb on the outside of your cheek. Squeeze to inspect the entire area for bumps or inflammation.
  • Stay One Step “A-head” of Cancer. Standing and looking straight ahead, observe any abnormalities on both sides of your head and neck. If you notice any protrusion or unevenness of head or facial structure, consult with your doctor. Similarly, check your neck for anything out of the ordinary. Applying light pressure, slide your fingertips around your neck. If you experience any tenderness or signs of swelling, consult with your physician.
  • Read Your Lips. While lips often change with the season, a severe change in lip color or texture can be a tell-tale sign that it’s time to visit your doctor to test for lip cancer. Because the lips are extremely sensitive to sunlight, it is important to apply an SPF lip balm or chap stick if you are in high levels of sun exposure.

Ways to prevent oral cancer:

  • Kick butt and quit using tobacco
  • Limit your alcohol consumption
  • Eat a well-balanced diet of fruits and vegetables
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure

Early detection is key. Take the time to perform routine checks, especially if you or someone you know has a family history of oral cancer. An oral self-assessment only takes a minute, but it may buy you a lifetime.

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