Do I Need a Referral To See an Oral Surgeon?

Do you need a dental implant? Maybe you have yet to get your wisdom teeth removed. In either case, both are dental issues that go beyond a standard dentist visit. In other words, they require specialized attention. For major dental work that involves surgery, you may need to visit an oral surgeon instead of your regular dentist.

Oral surgeons or oral and maxillofacial surgeons (OMS) perform surgical procedures for complex oral and dental health issues. They are the experts best equipped to handle surgeries such as dental implant placement, wisdom teeth extraction, corrective jaw surgery, and facial trauma treatments. Their specialized expertise ensures precise and successful outcomes for procedures that go beyond the scope of general dentistry. 

Can I Just Go See an Oral Surgeon if I Have an Issue?

Getting routine dental exams and care is easy. If you need an oral prophylaxis (cleaning treatment) or even normal dental fillings, you only need to book an appointment with your dentist.

However, unlike routine dental checkups, seeking out an oral surgeon usually involves a different process. In many cases, a dentist referral is necessary before you can schedule a visit with an oral surgeon. This referral serves as a way to ensure that you receive the most appropriate and targeted care for your specific oral health concern. Often, your dentist is the person who first recognizes the need or is the professional you ask for more intensive dental care.

Referrals to oral surgeons are essential for several reasons:

  • Expert Assessment: Your general dentist might recommend an oral surgeon based on their expertise in diagnosing and treating specific conditions.
  • Specialized Procedures: Oral surgeons have extensive training in performing complex surgeries and procedures that go beyond the scope of general dentistry.
  • Holistic Care: Referrals ensure that your oral surgeon is fully aware of your medical history, allowing them to tailor their approach to your unique needs.
  • Collaboration: Collaboration between your dentist and oral surgeon ensures a seamless transition from diagnosis to treatment, maximizing your chances of a successful outcome.

Dentists work closely with oral surgeons to coordinate your treatment plan, ensuring a seamless transition from one stage of care to another. This collaboration enhances the overall quality of care you receive and ensures that you’re getting the right treatment at the right time.

Dental Insurance Policies and Referrals

Referrals play a crucial role in ensuring you receive the right treatment. They also help you safely navigate dental insurance coverage. Many insurance plans require referrals prior to seeing any specialist — which includes specialized dental procedures like oral surgery. 

Without a proper referral, you may face challenges in obtaining coverage for your treatment. It is possible for insurance providers to deny claims for oral surgery treatments, leading to unexpected and heavy financial burdens. Depending on the insurance plan’s policies, you may also be required to visit specialists who are in-network with your provider.

It’s important to check the rules and guidelines of your insurance plan before you schedule an appointment with an oral surgeon so you can maximize your insurance benefits and minimize out-of-pocket expenses.

How To Get a Consultation with an Oral Surgeon

Dentistry and oral surgery is governed by a set of rules and guidelines designed to prioritize patient safety, well-being, and the highest standard of care. As a patient, understanding the process of seeking treatment from an oral surgeon can help you navigate the journey more effectively.

  • Consultation: If you suspect you need oral surgery, consult your dentist first. They will assess your condition and determine if a referral is necessary.
  • Referral Process: If a referral is needed, your dentist will provide you with the necessary information and documentation to share with the oral surgeon.
  • Consulting the Oral Surgeon: Once you have a referral, schedule a consultation with the oral surgeon. This is an opportunity to discuss your condition, treatment options, and any concerns you might have. While your dentist may have a preferred oral surgeon they refer you to, it is your choice to find an oral surgeon who is the best fit for you.

Book a Consultation with Green Valley Oral Surgery 

A dentist referral generally paves the way for a more comprehensive and collaborative approach to your oral health — allowing you to receive optimal dental care continuity.

Here at Green Valley Oral Surgery, doctor referrals are not a strict requirement. While we do highly recommend having one, we never turn away patients in need if they do not have a referral — especially anyone who may require emergency dental surgery and treatment.

Our team will do our best to not only address your primary dental concerns but also ensure you receive optimal continuity of care.

If you do not have time to get a doctor referral and are sure there would not be any conflict with your insurance provider, you may schedule a consultation with one of our skilled oral surgeons. Call our office at (707) 343-4818 or book an appointment with us online.