Oral Surgery in La Mirada

what is oral surgery?

In a general sense, the term “oral surgery” refers to any operation performed on your teeth, mouth, and gums. However, this term is not usually used to refer to simple treatments like fillings or crowns, but more advanced surgical treatments like tooth extractions or bone grafting.

At Charles Kim Dentistry and Orthodontics, Dr. Kim is here to help. We offer a full suite of advanced oral surgeries in La Mirada. With Dr. Kim’s years of experience, our advanced technology, and a patient-first approach, we’ll ensure you get the best possible care. Contact us now to schedule a consultation.

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Did you know…

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Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) was first used for oral surgery patients way back in the 1840s. Laughing gas is still used in oral surgery today, along with a lot of other different sedation options.

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How it works: The oral surgery process

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Consultation

First, you’ll schedule an appointment with Dr. Charles Kim to determine if oral surgery is the right option for you. As a conservative dentist, Dr. Kim will always recommend the least invasive option for treating your case.

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prepare for your surgery

If you are approved for treatment, Dr. Kim will provide you with instructions to follow before you come to our office to prepare for sedation. Before your treatment begins, your mouth will also be numbed to ensure you feel no discomfort.

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Get surgical treatment at our office

Dr. Kim and the team at Charles Kim Dentistry and Orthodontics will use the latest tools, technology, and techniques to ensure your surgery goes smoothly, and minimize your recovery time.

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REcovery & Follow-up appointments

Depending on the type of surgery, it could take a few days, a few weeks, or up to a few months to recover completely. Dr. Kim will provide you with all of the instructions you need during the recovery process.

oral surgery Options

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tooth extractions

We do not offer wisdom tooth extractions. However, we do extract damaged and decayed teeth. Dr. Kim also offers extractions for orthodontic purposes. If you have crowded teeth or an extra tooth, for example, Dr. Kim may recommend tooth extraction as part of the orthodontic treatment process.

Complex Occlusion Issues/Adjustments (Orthognathic surgery) 

At our office, Dr. Kim offers orthognathic surgery, also known as “corrective jaw surgery” for a wide variety of patients. If you have complex occlusion (bite) issues, orthodontic treatments like Invisalign or braces alone may not be enough to treat your condition. Corrective jaw surgery may sometimes be needed along with orthodontics to reposition your jaws and ensure your bite is healthy.

Bone grafts and sinus lifts

Bone grafts are usually used to prepare for dental implants. If your jaw bone is weak and cannot support a dental implant properly, bone grafting is recommended. In this procedure, Dr. Kim creates an opening in your jaw, and then packs bone granules into the treatment area. Over time, natural bone will heal around these granules. This strengthens the jaw, and allows a dental implant to be placed.

Sinus lifts are similar, but are used for the upper jaw. Because the sinus lining is very close to your teeth and jaw bone, it needs to be “lifted” upward to pack bone granules into the jaw. Other than this complication, sinus lifts are identical to standard bone grafts.

Alveoloplasty

Alveoloplasty is also sometimes called “bone ridge smoothing.” It’s often used to prepare the mouth for dental implants or dentures after a tooth extraction. When teeth are extracted, sharp and bony ridges may be left near the extraction site. This can make it more difficult to fit an artificial tooth into the treatment area.

In alveoloplasty, these ridges are gently sanded down to smooth them out, and ensure that they do not interfere with dentures, dental implants, or dental bridges. Depending on the situation and the patient, this treatment may be done as a separate procedure, or alongside a tooth extraction.

Did you know…

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About 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth and nearly 40 million Americans have lost all their teeth.

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Have questions about implant dentistry? Find answers here. 

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How are dental implants made?

A dental implant is made of two parts: a small, screw-shaped piece of titanium called the post, and the restoration, which is usually a dental crown and abutment. Posts are manufactured in a variety of pre-selected sizes to ensure each patient gets the right implant for their needs. In contrast, the restoration is completely custom-made. After your dentist places your dental implant, they will take impressions of your teeth and send them to a dental lab. 

There, a technician will create a long-lasting, durable dental implant restoration out of porcelain or another high-quality material. This restoration will be sent back to our office, and it will be attached to your dental implant, completing your implant procedure.

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How long do dental implants last?

Dental implants typically last up to 30 years or more with proper placement and care. In fact, it’s very common for patients to keep their implants for the rest of their lives. 

However, the dental implant restoration, such as a dental crown or set of overdentures, usually will not last this long. Your restoration is exposed to regular wear and tear from chewing, biting, and more, and may need to be replaced a few times over the years. 

Can dental implants get infected?

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It is possible for dental implants to become infected. This is known as “peri-implantitis.” However, this is a very rare complication, and it typically only occurs if the implant is not cared for and kept clean after surgery. 

You can avoid peri-implantitis by following your dentist’s instructions while recovering, and by brushing and flossing regularly after your implant has healed. 


Will dental implants stop bone loss?

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Yes. Bone loss occurs when your jaw bone is no longer stimulated by the natural pressure of chewing and biting. Your tooth transmits this force through the root and into your jaw bone, which keeps your jaw bone healthy. 

When you lose a tooth, this process stops, and the jaw bone tends to weaken. Since the post of the dental implant is placed directly into the jaw bone and acts as a tooth root, it restimulates your jaw bone by transmitting the force of chewing and biting once again.


Can dental implants be done in one day?

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Some types of dental implant systems can be done in one day. The restoration is usually temporary until you have fully healed from your dental implant placement surgery. This solution allows you to speak and eat normally, however, the restoration is temporary. 

As your mouth heals, you’ll attend appointments at your doctor’s office where impressions will be taken. These impressions will guide the manufacturing of your restoration. This permanent restoration will be a more durable, long-lasting, and natural-looking prosthetic than your temporaries.


Did you know…

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Dental implants are the only restorative option that preserves and stimulates your natural bone structure.

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