Frequently Asked Questions


Dental Implants

Are dental implants removable like dentures?

No. Dental implants are permanently placed by an oral surgeon.

Are dental implants safe?

Dental implant surgery is considered to be a very safe procedure. 

Can a dental implant benefit my oral health? 

Yes. By placing an implant where a tooth used to be, the mouth is able to maintain bone mass in that area, preventing other teeth from moving or shifting around in the mouth and promoting good dental health. Dental implants are the only option that promote bone growth in a fashion similar to natural teeth. 

What kind of foods can you eat after dental implant surgery?

Soft foods are recommended in the days following dental implants surgery. The amount of time needed to heal post-surgery will be dependent upon the individual, and will be discussed after surgery with Dr. Cullum and staff. 

Suggested foods to eat:

  • Mashed potatoes

  • Soft Pastas

  • Scrambled Eggs

  • Soup

  • Cottage Cheese

  • Soft Canned Fruit

  • Blended Foods that do not contain seeds or nuts

  • Pudding and Sauces 

  • Rice 

  • Bread

  • Yogurt

How long does it take to recover from implant surgery?

Recovery from surgery generally takes 1-2 days, while healing for the placement of a crown after dental implant surgery is 3-4 months. 

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Wisdom Teeth

What is dry socket?

Dry socket occurs when the scab and blood clot that form around the wisdom tooth surgery site are lifted out of place and the bone and nerves in the mouth are exposed to air. While dry socket can be uncomfortable, effective measures exist to prevent dry socket and treat it, if necessary. 

When do wisdom teeth develop?

For many people, wisdom teeth develop around the ages of 18-22, though this isn't the case for all people. 

Why is it important to have your wisdom teeth removed?

One of the most common reasons for wisdom teeth removal is impactation. Impactation occurs when the wisdom teeth begin to grow and push on the other teeth; since there is often not room in the mouth for wisdom teeth, the risk of over-crowding and discomfort must be considered. One of the second most common reasons is infection from the wisdom teeth. 

What kinds of food can you eat after wisdom teeth surgery?

For the first couple of days after surgery, it is recommended that you stick to a soft-food diet, by eating foods such as:

  • smoothies and milkshakes

  • eggs

  • cottage cheese

  • yogurts

  • soups

  • pasta

Foods to avoid for the first couple of days following surgery include:

  • chips

  • nuts

  • deep-fried food (crunchy)

  • alcohol 

  • popcorn

  • crackers

  • cookies

The specific amount of days a soft food diet is required depends on the surgery as well as the individual. Specific instructions on diet will be provided following surgery. 

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Other Questions

Can I eat before surgery?

The answer depends on whether you are getting general anesthesia. If you are receiving general anesthesia, you will not be able to eat for eight hours prior to surgery. 

Will pre-op and post-op instructions be provided?

Yes. Pre-op and post-op instructions will be provided on a person-by-person basis. Each individual will receive instructions specific to their care and needs, it is important that you read and follow all of the surgery instructions closely. 

Why should you see an Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon for extractions and wisdom teeth removal?

Oral and Maxilliofacial surgeons have received extensive medical and dental training, and have many years of experience specializing in extractions and wisdom teeth removal. 

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