A maxillofacial surgeon deals in a very specialized field of medicine. Consequently, one might wonder if this surgeon is a dental surgeon or a medical practitioner, but the actual answer is somewhere in the middle. The exact details of their profession, their qualifications, and the conditions that they treat will be a mystery to the average person.
Hence, the team at Argyle Associates would like you to learn all there is to know about a maxillofacial surgeon.
Maxillofacial Surgeon – Explained
Also known as an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, this is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the face, jaw, mouth, and neck. Furthermore, issues like face injuries, cleft palates or lips, facial deformities, head and neck cancers, misaligned jaws, and impacted teeth can fall under this category.
Substantial education and training in medicine and dentistry are required to specialize in maxillofacial surgery. Therefore, these surgeons often collaborate with dentists, orthodontists, oncologists and other medical professionals to care for patients and their medical issues.
Qualifications of a Maxillofacial Surgeon
Becoming a maxillofacial surgeon is an involved multidisciplinary undertaking that will take many years to complete.
First, one has to take and complete a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field like biology, chemistry or pre-medicine. Following that is a four-year degree in either Doctor of Dental Medicine (DMD) or Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) from a dental school that has proper accreditation.
After completing the dental school degree programs, one then has to go through an oral and maxillofacial surgery residency program. Participants in the program will be trained comprehensively in medical and dental practices like administering anaesthesia, general surgery, plastic surgery, reconstructive surgery and head and neck surgery. They are also given first-hand insight into the process of diagnosing and treating most of the issues that affect the oral and maxillofacial region. These programs usually take 4 to 6 years.
To legally practice as a maxillofacial surgeon, one must also pass board certification exams administered by the National Dental Examining Board of Canada (NDEB). These tests evaluate a person’s knowledge, skill and expertise in maxillofacial surgery and anyone who intends to practice must obtain this certification.
What Situations Require a Maxillofacial Surgeon?
Their dual certification in medicine and dentistry makes maxillofacial surgeons uniquely qualified to diagnose and treat the many issues that affect the oral and maxillofacial regions of the body. If surgical intervention is required to correct these conditions, they have the knowledge and skills to perform it.
Procedures performed by maxillofacial surgeons include
- Reconstructive surgery to restore face and jaw form and function after injuries, diseases or congenital defects.
- Orthognathic surgery shifts the jaw into a more appropriate position to improve facial profiles and fix issues with the jaw’s bite.
- Dental implant surgery to replace missing teeth.
- Cancer surgery in the head and neck to remove cancerous tissue and perform reconstructive surgery on the affected area.
Argyle Associates – Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery
To give comprehensive care to patients with oral and maxillofacial disorders, a maxillofacial surgeon goes through school and training in both medicine and dentistry to gain the necessary skills and knowledge. Consequently, their expertise allows them to address many issues that a dentist or a doctor may encounter and cannot treat. With the help of a maxillofacial surgeon, you can achieve and maintain a good quality of dental care.
Please contact us if you need the services of a maxillofacial surgeon. Argyle Associates is home to some of the best maxillofacial surgeons in Canada. Our expertise is relied upon by dentists, orthodontists, physicians, etc. Trust and quality of care are our top priorities and we consider it a privilege to be a part of your healthcare team.