COVID-19 and treatment at Bath Oral surgery Clinic
The arrival of COVID-19/coronavirus in the UK has inevitably brought about changes as regards the management of patients referred to Bath Oral Surgery Clinic. We are very concerned to ensure that both patients and members of the team are safe and protected at all times during treatment sessions at Saltford.
All consultation appointments with Tim Milton will now take place remotely via Zoom with reference to the description of the various surgical procedures and intravenous sedation already provided in the patient information section of the Clinic’s website. Each consultation will include the recording of a full medical history together with a separate COVID-19 assessment.
Surgical appointment times will be arranged such that only one patient will be in the Clinic at any one time. We would ask that on arrival patients and any accompanying escorts remain in their car in the parking area outside the front of the Clinic and notify us by calling 01225 874444/07968 971899.
Patients will then be collected by a member of the Clinic team and escorted to the waiting room; all accompanying persons must remain in the car and not enter the Clinic unless specifically asked to do so.
Whilst the patient is in the waiting room any outstanding preoperative paperwork will be completed together with a further COVID-19 assessment and temperature check.
Surgical treatments such as those carried out at Bath Oral Surgery Clinic are regarded as being aerosol generating procedures (AGPs) and therefore all members of the Clinic team directly involved with the procedure will be wearing enhanced personal protective equipment (PPE). We will therefore appear quite different during the treatment session compared with the pre-COVID-19 era but do be reassured that the surgical care demonstrated by the Clinic team will not have changed.
There can be several reasons for having to remove a tooth surgically. Typically the tooth is extensively decayed or fractured and is causing chronic infection and discomfort. Surgical removal is needed when simple extraction is not possible because of the condition of the tooth.
How long will the operation take?
This depends on the position of your tooth or teeth and whether the operation is being carried out with local anaesthesia alone or with additional intravenous sedation. An appointment for surgery under local anaesthesia usually lasts 60 minutes.
When intravenous sedation is used an appointment usually lasts 90 minutes; this longer time allows for the recovery period needed before you can be discharged home.
Will there be any stitches?
Stitches are usually required as part of these procedures and will be dissolvable. These stitches can take up to 2 weeks to go although sometimes they break down much sooner.
Will I be in pain afterwards?
You should not feel any pain immediately after the operation as the area of surgery will be numb from the local anaesthetic. As this numbness wears off the area might become uncomfortable and you should then take painkillers. We will supply you with these together with information about doses.
Could there be any after-effects?
This depends on the nature of your operation; if there are any issues in particular to be aware of they will be discussed with you beforehand.
There may be swelling, bruising and discomfort in the area of the surgery together with some limitation in jaw opening. The bruising is usually at its most obvious 2 to 5 days after the procedure and will vary between patients; it normally resolves after 7 to 10 days.
The removal of buried or impacted teeth or roots may be followed by altered sensation in the area of the surgery. This is due to the bruising affecting the nerves that carry sensation from that area. This is usually only a temporary condition although it can take up to 6 months to fully resolve itself.
The roots of upper molar (back) teeth can be very close to the air space (antrum) within the cheekbone leading to the risk of a communication developing between this air space and the mouth following the removal of such a tooth. The likelihood of this can be very much reduced by avoiding vigorous sneezing or nose blowing for the first 2 to 3 weeks following the procedure.
When can I return to work?
This depends on your occupation and how you are after your treatment. It may be possible for you to return to college or work the next day but some people will need to take some time off especially if the operation has been carried out under intravenous sedation. We will give you appropriate advice for your particular circumstances.
Find out how to help bring about a quick recovery after an operation.