Frequently Asked Questions on Oral Surgery
01 Is Oral Surgery painful?
The surgery itself should never be painful. There can often be a small pinch or slight discomfort at the beginning of any treatment when receiving an injection, but even this is now much more pain-free. We at COS always use a strong spray that numbs the surface of the gum prior to any injection.
We always allow the injection plenty of time to take effect. Following this, once you are numb, then you will not feel any pain. Some people will need more injections than others and so we will always test the site prior to commencing the treatment. If you are not numb enough, we can give additional injections until you are happy that you cannot feel anything.
Once fully numb, the only sensations you should be aware of are pressure/pushing, and “sound effects”! Pressure is a normal sensation during a procedure, as the nerves responsible for feeling pressure continue to work. Sound effects are also normal, as very often teeth “chip” or “crack” a little while they are removed.
02 Will I be sore after the procedure?
Most people will experience some level of discomfort following oral surgery. However, this is generally very manageable if you take painkillers as per our advice. Many patients will only be required to take “over the counter” painkillers such as Paracetamol or Ibuprofen. On other occasions we may prescribe stronger painkillers where needed. The key to managing any discomfort is to take these painkillers regularly and routinely over the course of the following days. Pain rarely lasts longer than one week.
We always advise that it is unwise to wait for pain to set in before taking the painkillers. Pain-relief should be taken in advance. Pain-studies repeatedly show that patients who take painkillers prior to the onset of pain do much better than those who do not.
03 How long will my appointment take?
Most appointments in COS last 30 to 45 minutes. This can vary depending on the type of appointment, and the surgery to be discussed/carried out. Most treatments themselves will only take 10-15 minutes, but we allow for much more time than this, so that we can discuss the relevant information before and after your treatment, and answer any of your questions.
04 I am nervous, can I be asleep for my treatment?
We have two options for delivering treatment to those who are too nervous to remain “awake”. As per our treatments section, we can provide treatment under intra-venous sedation here in the clinic, or treatment under full general anaesthetic in the Mater Private Cork. The decision on this is always yours, as we will carry out the treatment in precisely the same manner regardless. The level of anxiety and the complexity of the surgery are generally the factors that we consider and discuss so that you can choose the correct option for you.
05 Will my health insurance cover the cost of my treatment?
The health insurers do not cover the costs of consultations or x-rays/scans. However, many of our procedures are covered by your private medical health insurance. All procedures that are deemed to be “surgical” in nature i.e. involving gum incision, tooth division, suturing etc., are covered. For other procedures that do not involve these surgical steps, the health insurers will not cover the costs.
On many occasions we can tell in advance if the procedure is likely to be surgical, and hence covered, and we will advise you of this. However, our ability to know in advance depends on the detail provided in the referral letter. If there is a lot of information provided by your dentist (including x-rays/photos etc.), then we can gain a much clearer view of what is required and if your treatment is likely to be covered.
06 Can I claim any oral surgery fees back on my tax?
Yes. As per the Revenue “Med 2 Form”, you will see that Section I allows for reclaiming of dental expenses specifically for “surgical extraction of impacted wisdom teeth”. However, this is the only oral surgery procedure which applies to the Med 2 Form. For other information on this please see revenue.ie or speak with your accountant. We can provide you with the completed Med 2 Form on request, with which you will also need to submit a practice receipt.