The Less You Worry, the Easier it Will Be
An upcoming visit to an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon can be a source of anxiety. Patients are typically concerned about possible pain — either during or after the procedure.
Whether your procedure requires local or intravenous anesthesia, today's technology makes it possible to perform complex surgery in the oral and maxillofacial surgery office with little or no discomfort for the patient.
The good news is that whether your procedure requires local or intravenous anesthesia, today's technology makes it possible to perform complex surgery in the oral and maxillofacial surgery office with little or no discomfort for the patient. Knowing this should start to reduce your level of anxiety.
Extensive Training and Experience in the Control of Pain and Anxiety
The ability to provide patients with safe, effective outpatient anesthesia has distinguished the specialty of oral and maxillofacial surgery since its earliest days. As the surgical specialists of the dental profession, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are trained in all aspects of anesthesia administration. Following dental school, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons complete at least four years of training in a hospital-based surgical residency program alongside medical residents in general surgery, anesthesia and other specialties. During this time, OMS residents must complete a rotation on the medical anesthesiology service, during which they become competent in evaluating patients for anesthesia, delivering the anesthetic and monitoring post-anesthetic patients.
As a result of this extensive training, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are well-prepared to identify, diagnose and assess the source of pain and anxiety within the scope of their discipline, and to appropriately administer local anesthesia, all forms of sedation and general anesthesia. Further, they are experienced in airway management, endotracheal intubation, establishing and maintaining intravenous lines, and managing complications and emergencies that may arise during the administration of anesthesia.
Putting Your Mind at Ease
The best way to reduce anxiety is to make certain you know what to expect during and after surgery. The more you know, the less you worry. Studies have shown that patients who are well informed prior to a procedure tend to experience less post-operative discomfort and tend to use less pain medication. Prior to surgery, Dr. Halpern will review with you the type of anesthetic to be used, as well as, the way you're likely to feel during and after treatment. This is the time to discuss any concerns you may have about any facet of the treatment.
During surgery, one or more of the following may be used to control your pain and anxiety: local anesthesia, nitrous oxide-oxygen, intravenous sedation and general anesthesia. Commonly, patients describe their feelings during surgery as comfortable and surprisingly pleasant.
After surgery, you may be prescribed a medication to make you as comfortable as possible when you get home.
© 2012 Reprinted with permission from American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS). All rights reserved.