Many patients in the Leland and Wilmington area may be scared away from oral surgery procedures because they are afraid of the extended healing time. While most oral surgeries just take a few days to recover from, sometimes the healing process continues inside the body for weeks or months. Platelet-rich plasma, better known as PRP, is a new way to decrease this extended healing time and help patients move on with their lives. Offered by Dr. Austin at Austin Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, PRP treatment is an ideal complement to many clinical applications, including dental implants, sinus lifts, and more.
What Is PRP Treatment?
Platelets are a substance naturally present in blood that contains growth factors to help the body naturally heal. When the body suffers an injury, the growth factors in platelets flock to the site to assist in repairs by triggering stem cells to produce new tissue.
By collecting a sample of blood from the patient, separating the platelets from the other solid components of the blood, and adding them back to the liquid part of the blood (plasma), it creates a fortified healing substance that delivers a boost of growth factors to a targeted area. This process is known as centrifugation.
Once the PRP solution has been created, it is then injected to the site of an injury or incision. PRP treatment can contain have five to 10 times more platelets than normal blood, and when it’s injected into a specific area, it can greatly improve healing times to help a patient recover faster.
What Can PRP Be Used For?
In the case of oral surgery, PRP has many useful applications for patients across the Leland and Wilmington areas. Realistically, it can be used for any procedure that involves cutting into or damaging soft tissues in the mouth or jaw. Some cases in which PRP treatment might be used to provide a healing boost include:
• Tooth extraction to help the gums and jawbone heal
• Periodontal surgery to repair infrabony (when teeth have pockets in the bone walls)or furcation (when teeth lose bone around the base of the roots) defects.
• Dental implants to help the bone start to bond with the implant as well as stimulate faster gum healing
• Bone grafting to help the tissue grafts bond with the jaw and stimulate the production of new tissue
• Sinus lift procedures to assist soft tissues and bone in healing faster
• Closure of clef, lip, and palate defects to ensure the closure is successful
Benefits of PRP Treatment
For Leland and Wilmington patients who are considering PRP treatment, there are a number of benefits it can provide to any oral procedure. In fact, these benefits greatly outweigh any risks or drawbacks of the treatment. As long as Dr. Austin does not identify any potential contraindications to the procedure, most patients can confidently choose PRP treatment as an add-on to their oral surgery. If they do so, they’ll get to experience the following advantages:
• Fast and easy procedure. The entire PRP treatment will take just a few extra minutes at the end of the initial procedure, meaning it won’t cause patients any extra inconvenience.
• Affordable results. Because Dr. Austin harvests and prepares the PRP solution in his Leland and Wilmington office, there is no need to send tissue away to an outside lab, the cost of the procedure is greatly reduced.
• Quicker healing. By supplementing oral surgeries with PRP treatment, many patients will see decreased healing times because of the increased tissue regeneration at the wound site.
• Low risk of side effects. Because the PRP solution is crafted from the patient’s own blood, there is a low likelihood of any side effects or disease transmission.
How Safe Is PRP?
PRP treatment is extremely safe for many Leland and Wilmington patients, as the mixture is crafted entirely from the patient’s own blood. There is no donor blood or synthetic chemicals added to the mixture; rather, it simply involves taking blood from the body, putting it in a centrifuge machine to separate the liquid and solid components, and then adding the selected components back into the body. In all, the entire process takes just 15 minutes from start to finish.
Not only is PRP treatment extremely safe, but it’s also highly effective. Numerous studies have shown that supplementing oral surgery procedures with PRP leads to significant improvements in healing time and a reduction of post-operative complications. Many patients also experienced less pain and swelling after a procedure.
In one specific study, patients had wisdom teeth extractions. One group received PRP treatments after the extractions, while the other did not. Researchers performed numerous X-rays on the patients after the surgery to see how their recovery was going, keeping an eye out for facial swelling, pain, inflammation, bleeding, and tissue healing.
In the patients who had been treated with PRP, early X-rays showed nearly immediate improvement in bone density. In the untreated group, it took six weeks to match the bone density showed by the PRP group in early X-rays. In fact, the untreated group actually showed a decrease in bone density in early X-rays, suggesting that PRP provided an incredible boost in healing time.
Who Is a Candidate for PRP?
Overall, many of the patients who seek care from Dr. Austin at his Leland and Wilmington office are candidates for PRP treatment. The only real contraindication is for patients that have bleeding disorders or certain hematologic diseases. To determine candidacy for PRP, Dr. Austin will thoroughly examine each and every patient at their initial consultation.
Heal Faster With PRP Treatment in Leland and Wilmington
If you’re planning on having oral surgery in the future, consider adding PRP treatment to increase your healing time and boost your results. It’s easy for Dr. Austin to perform this procedure in addition to your other surgery, and he’ll use his extreme knowledge and expertise to ensure the injections are optimally placed.