expert type icon EXPERT

Dr. Gary K. Lines, DMD

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

Dr. Gary Lines is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon practicing in Glendale, AZ. Dr. Lines specializes in the treatment of problems related to the face, mouth and jaws. As an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, Dr. Lines is a unique dental specialist who can provide emergency medicine, perform general surgery and give anesthesia. These medical doctors are the only type of medical care specialist who can administer anesthesia, besides anesthesiologists. Typical procedures performed by Dr. Lines are tooth extractions, especially wisdom teeth, corrective jaw surgery, cleft palate surgery and reconstructive surgery after an injury. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons can also perform dental work including placing dental implants. These surgeons might also deal with conditions of sleep apnea, oral cancers and more.
Dr. Gary K. Lines, DMD
  • Glendale, AZ
  • Accepting new patients

How long is the recovery for a wisdom tooth extraction?

That depends on how difficult the teeth are or the degree of impactions of the teeth and who is doing the surgery. If you have an Oral Surgeon remove them with I.V. anesthesia READ MORE
That depends on how difficult the teeth are or the degree of impactions of the teeth and who is doing the surgery. If you have an Oral Surgeon remove them with I.V. anesthesia with I.V. pain medications and steroids and your doctor is utilizing PRF (platelet rich plasma) as we do, recovery is often only a few days of being uncomfortable. The time of recovery varies from patient to patient, however it usually is 3-5 days.

Should I get all of my wisdom teeth extracted in one appointment?

Often all impacted third molars are removed at the same time while having I.V. Anesthesia along with local anesthetic. Most Oral surgeons remove all 4 third molars at the same READ MORE
Often all impacted third molars are removed at the same time while having I.V. Anesthesia along with local anesthetic. Most Oral surgeons remove all 4 third molars at the same time if anesthesia is used so you don't have to have multiple surgeries and recover from surgery more that once. Often taking out all 4 third molars under anesthesia, also utilizing I.V. pain medications and steroids, by an Oral Surgeon takes less surgery time and therefore reduces pain and swelling post operatively.

Why do I need to go to an oral surgeon for my tooth extraction?

All extractions whether by an Oral Surgeon or your General Dentist are referred to as surgery. An Oral Surgeon is a dentist that has spent 4-6 years in specialty training to remove READ MORE
All extractions whether by an Oral Surgeon or your General Dentist are referred to as surgery. An Oral Surgeon is a dentist that has spent 4-6 years in specialty training to remove teeth quickly and with as little trauma as possible with the use of I.V. anesthetics and I.V. antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medications to make the surgical removal of the teeth as pleasant a possible for the patient. Oral Surgeons have removed thousands of erupted and impacted teeth and remove them very efficiently, and quickly which can reduce possible complications such as infections and dry sockets.

My wisdom teeth haven't come in. Is this normal?

Everyone has their own time clock for dental eruptions. Chronologic vs physiologic are not always in sync. You will need an panorex radiograph to determine if you have third READ MORE
Everyone has their own time clock for dental eruptions. Chronologic vs physiologic are not always in sync. You will need an panorex radiograph to determine if you have third molars or wisdom teeth, and if they are impacted or positioned for eruption. Then you and your dentist can determine if they will need to be removed.

When is corrective jaw surgery needed?

Second opinions are great. At least the Orthodontist is telling you ahead of time that there may be more that just braces to properly correct your child bite. Orthognathic or READ MORE
Second opinions are great. At least the Orthodontist is telling you ahead of time that there may be more that just braces to properly correct your child bite. Orthognathic or corrective jaw surgery is usually needed when the upper and lower teeth will not come together correctly even after orthodontic correction. If the teeth are moved with orthodontics to far (in the alveolar bone that supports the teeth) trying to provide proper occlusion, the roots may be pushed out of the alveolar bone and soft tissue trying to compensate for skeletal bone deficiencies. The teeth and bone have to be physiologically positioned together to function properly. Orthognathic surgery can move the structural part of the jaws so the teeth in the alveolar bone align properly and remove the skeletal causes of a patients malocclusion. Talk with your Orthodontist and Oral Surgeon, They have a lot of patient education photos and diagrams of the types of corrective jaw surgery's that are most common and it will make things a lot clearer for you to understand.

Is surgery helpful in treating sleep apnea?

Long considered the "Gold Standard" for curing sleep apnea is upper and lower jaw surgery with advancement of the maxilla and mandible. However, since most insurances won't cover READ MORE
Long considered the "Gold Standard" for curing sleep apnea is upper and lower jaw surgery with advancement of the maxilla and mandible. However, since most insurances won't cover jaw surgery right off the bat you may have to undergo various other less noninvasive treatment for sleep apnea such as dental appliances, CPAP machines, soft palate reduction, and nasal surgeries. If all the other treatments fail to correct the sleep apnea then corrective jaw surgery should be considered.

My wisdom tooth is piercing my gum. What should I do?

For the immediate need of pain relief, Tylenol or Advil can be useful for pain reduction along with a topical such as teething gels to numb the area. When you get home you need READ MORE
For the immediate need of pain relief, Tylenol or Advil can be useful for pain reduction along with a topical such as teething gels to numb the area. When you get home you need to have your Oral Surgeon or dentist evaluate the positions of the teeth for the possibility of removing them if they are impacted. Exposed, impacted third molars can developed infections called pericoronitis and be very painful.

I had a car accident that caused my bottom jaw to be out of place. Can surgery help me?

Displacement of jaws after and accident can often indicate fractures of the mandible or dislocations of the TM Joint. In either case you need to have some 3D imaging of the mandible READ MORE
Displacement of jaws after and accident can often indicate fractures of the mandible or dislocations of the TM Joint. In either case you need to have some 3D imaging of the mandible to rule out fractures that healed poorly. If the CT is negative then an MRI of the TM Joint may be indicated to evaluate the meniscus of the joint. Mal-aligned fractures can be surgically repaired if indicated. Minor bite changes can often be treated with Orthodontics and no surgery. If you have a meniscus displacement or internal derangement of the meniscus you man need some non-surgical TMJ therapy to try and recapture the meniscus in the proper position. Some times arthroscopy or open joint therapy is needed. Seek out an Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon to have a complete work up to properly evaluate your "out of place jaw"

I have a crooked smile. Do I need surgery to correct this?

Some malocclusions or "crooked smiles" are skeletal in nature that is the bones for the face and jaws have either under or over developed leading to the teeth being crooked. A READ MORE
Some malocclusions or "crooked smiles" are skeletal in nature that is the bones for the face and jaws have either under or over developed leading to the teeth being crooked. A full orthodontic workup is warranted to evaluate the teeth and the facial bones as to the source of the malocclusion. If the malocclusion is simple (tooth related only) and can be corrected by braces that is often all that is needed. In severe cases where the jaws are not properly formed along with poor teeth positions, corrective jaw surgery may be indicated. In either event, the place to start first is the Orthodontist then possibly a consultation with an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon to evaluate the need for corrective jaw surgery for the crooked smile.

My wisdom tooth is aching. Is it better to have it extracted?

You need to have them evaluated with appropriate radiographs and evaluate the need to have them out. Often impacted teeth when trying to erupt go through times of pain and swelling READ MORE
You need to have them evaluated with appropriate radiographs and evaluate the need to have them out. Often impacted teeth when trying to erupt go through times of pain and swelling which subsides only to reoccur. Wisdom teeth need to be removed for various reasons. You can have your dentist evaluate them or seek out an oral surgeon that can offer I.V. anesthesia to have them removed if it has been deemed necessary to remove them.

My wisdom tooth hurts a lot. Is extraction the only option?

Many third molars or wisdom teeth can partially erupt or erupt malpositioned and non-functional. Often these malposed teeth have soft tissue over the tooth with periodontal pockets READ MORE
Many third molars or wisdom teeth can partially erupt or erupt malpositioned and non-functional. Often these malposed teeth have soft tissue over the tooth with periodontal pockets forming around the tooth and "pericoronitis" can occur leading to pain and infections. You need to have your dentist or oral surgeon look at the tooth clinically and radiographically to determine if the tooth needs to be removed. If the soft tissue can be removed and normal hygiene is obtainable, then the tooth can be left in place, however in most cases removal of the malposed tooth is the best choice.

My daughter is 5 years old and has been recommended a root canal surgery. What should I do?

If her teeth are still primary or baby teeth, pulpotomies can be done to eliminate pain and tenderness. Often a stainless steel cap is placed over the primary tooth if there READ MORE
If her teeth are still primary or baby teeth, pulpotomies can be done to eliminate pain and tenderness. Often a stainless steel cap is placed over the primary tooth if there is significant decay to protect the tooth structure until the falls out on its own when the permanent tooth erupts. I don't think that a "root canal" in the traditional way is being done on primary teeth. You may want to seek out a Pedodontist for a second opinion.

Adult tooth is loose. What should I do?

You need to see an oral surgeon to evaluate the tooth and the bone that surrounds the tooth for fractures. Often you also need to have an Endodontist evaluate the need for removal READ MORE
You need to see an oral surgeon to evaluate the tooth and the bone that surrounds the tooth for fractures. Often you also need to have an Endodontist evaluate the need for removal of the nerve if indicated. Stabilization of the tooth with a bonded appliance is also used to aid in the healing and stabilization of bone and tooth. Long term follow-up may be needed since some traumatized teeth develope resorption and later may have to be removed.

Risk of nerve damage during impacted wisdom tooth surgery?

Any surgery has potential risks associated with it. Third molar surgery in no exception. The risks of removing impated third molars on the lower jaw are, pain, swelliing, bleeding, READ MORE
Any surgery has potential risks associated with it. Third molar surgery in no exception. The risks of removing impated third molars on the lower jaw are, pain, swelliing, bleeding, infection, fracture of bone, and damage to the nerve that supplies the feeling to your lower lip and chin. The risk of damage to the nerve is related to the proximity of the nerve to the third molar. A panorex radiograph is the most common way to evaluate the position of the impacted tooth to the nerve. It is then possible to better evaluate the risk of damaging the nerve at surgery. Sometimes a 3D cone beam CAT scan is beneificial in showing the anatomy more clearly. The average of patients who have tingling and numbness after lower third molar removal is in the 0-5% range. Permanent nerve damage is very rare. People can have a numb lip and chin just from having a local anesthetic injected over the nerve for fillings, so it is rare for numbness to persist after surgery lasting for weeks or months. A lot of complication are age realated. The older the patient is, degree of impaction, and the degree of difficluty in the removal, increases the possiblilty of numbness or time it requires for the numbness to go away. Please consult with your Oral Surgeon or dental professional prior to any surgery and have the risk, benefits, and alternatives explained to your completely prior to surgery.

What can I expect after oral surgery?

Recovery is totally dependant on what type of surgery is done. If the teeth are removed it can be sore for several days, where ibuprophen and or tylenolol may be all you need READ MORE
Recovery is totally dependant on what type of surgery is done. If the teeth are removed it can be sore for several days, where ibuprophen and or tylenolol may be all you need for pain. Sometimes a narcotic is prescribed when the expectation of discomfort will be greater than ibuprophen or tylenolol can control. A complete comprehensive consultation with your surgeon should go over post operative care and expectations of, and control of pain.

Wisdom teeth pain after they're gone

Not normally. Occasional pain at the extraction sites of wisdom teeth 5 years out from surgery is unheard of. I would be conserned that there may be something else going on like READ MORE
Not normally. Occasional pain at the extraction sites of wisdom teeth 5 years out from surgery is unheard of. I would be conserned that there may be something else going on like a bone like fragment or debris under the tissue, but this is usually only seen weeks of so after surgery. If the patient has a history of bruxism or clenching they may develope pain in the jaws that are realated to muscle, bone, and or teeth. In any event I would recommend a 3D Cone Beam exam and exam by your surgeon and evalate the areas where the teeth were removed to rule out any sourse of pain from the surgery/teeth.

Wisdom teeth removal

Great question! All dentists learned in Dental School how to remove teeth with various leves of expertise. Many dentist are very good at removal of teeth but refer their patient READ MORE
Great question! All dentists learned in Dental School how to remove teeth with various leves of expertise. Many dentist are very good at removal of teeth but refer their patient to an Oral Surgeon for the more difficult teeth as well as impacted 3rd molars ( wisdom teeth). Oral surgeons have between 4-6 years in additional surgical training to remove teeth and treat the various complication that can occur fom wisdom teeth removal, and are trained in general anesthesia to make the surgical experience more pleasant. Talk with your dentist and ask if a referral to an oral surgeon is appropiate.