Oral & Facial Surgery of Northeast Texas

The Perils of Wisdom Teeth Removal After 30

Oral surgeons and dentists recommend having your wisdom teeth removed in your teens or twenties to avoid possible complications later in life. But is wisdom teeth removal when you are young necessary? If you want to prevent complications and recover quickly, the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

woman over 30 years old with wisdom tooth pain

Wisdom Teeth Surgery Risks After 30

After 30, wisdom tooth extraction has significantly more complications and risks, including impaction, slower recovery, more time off work, and the surgery itself may be more difficult to perform. Some patients who have their wisdom teeth removed later in life also run the risk of jaw fracture, numbness, loss of the second molar, and additional health risks.

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To Our Valued Patients with Delta Dental Insurance

Our commitment to our patients has never wavered over the years. Unfortunately, we have experienced increasing difficulty working with Delta Dental in recent years. Our relationship with this dental insurance provider is changing in the near future. We understand this impacts many of our patients and have not made this decision lightly.

After months of attempting to reach a beneficial resolution for all parties, including our patients, we realize we can no longer be a Preferred Provider in the Delta network. We cannot continue to accept the same level of reimbursement for oral surgery procedures that Delta has provided for seventeen years without an increase.

Over those years, we have invested in continuing education, innovative technologies, and the ever-increasing cost of supplies without Delta’s support. However, in the interest of continuing to provide dental care to our patients with Delta oral surgery insurance, we will continue to accept Delta insurance on a limited basis. We hope the solutions outlined below will help ease the transition and allow our patients to schedule the oral surgery they need.

Paris vs. Texarkana

Delta Insurance considers each location’s reimbursement rates based on zip code, offering higher fees for oral surgery in Paris. Oral surgery performed in Texarkana is covered at a significantly lower rate despite the same high level of care. For this reason, some of our doctors in Texarkana are no longer accepting Delta oral surgery insurance. However, Dr. Burks and Dr. Hastings continue to accept Delta insurance in both locations.

While Drs. Bunel, Duke and Legan all value their patients and hope to continue working with them, they understand that some Texarkana patients may choose to see Dr. Burks or Dr. Hastings for this reason. If you decide to go this route, your records will be transferred to them, and your care will transition seamlessly. Dr. Duke and Dr. Legan will still be accepting Delta Dental at the Paris location, so patients may also choose to drive to that office.

Solutions for Delta Dental Insurance Patients

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3 Benefits of Dental Implants

Dental Implants to Replace Missing Teeth

Missing teeth? You may be trying to decide what replacement procedure is best for you; dental implants, dentures or maybe even another option. When it comes to choosing, we always recommend dental implants. Dental Implants are a permanent solution to a lost tooth (or teeth) and have many benefits over some of your other options. To help make your decision a little bit easier, we’ve created a list of the top three benefits of dental implants!

1. Dental Implants Act Like Natural Teeth!

One of the most well-known benefits of dental implants is that they look and act just like your natural teeth. When properly placed, dental implants are nearly impossible to detect. Unlike dentures, which are removable and can cause discomfort to the wearer, dental implants are surgically placed into the jaw and provide no discomfort.

When dental implants are implanted to your jawbone, they provide the utmost of stability. This means that you can continue to eat your favorite foods, speak normally, and enjoy your improved self-esteem!

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Everything You Need to Know About Dental Bone Grafting

What is a Bone Graft?

Bone grafting is a surgical procedure done when you need to repair bone fractures or replace bone loss. When a tooth is missing or retracted from the alveolar bones that support your roots, gums, and teeth, it eventually evaporates, causing facial features to shift and sag over time. This then creates potential problems such as pain in your mouth, not being able to speak properly or chew food adequately. Fortunately, with the help of bone grafts, the bone that has been lost can be built again, which will not only heighten your appearance by providing strength back into your jaw bone, but also allows us to place a dental implant (artificial tooth) on top of it! In simple terms, the goal of bone grafting is to provide a safe, long-term solution to tooth loss!

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Holiday Food Guide For After Your Wisdom Teeth Surgery

Having your wisdom teeth removed during the holidays might be upsetting— especially when thinking about all the food you’re going to miss out on. Luckily for you, there’s still hope! Fortunately, there are plenty of options that are not only delicious, but post-removal friendly!

Below is a handy post-wisdom teeth removal food guide to help you through the holiday season!

Blended Soups

With the colder weather, hearty soups can not only be filling, but also easy to eat post wisdom teeth removal. Blended soups made of pumpkin or tomato will give you that festive feeling you’re looking for, while also fueling your body with vitamins like A, C and E! This will give you the nutrition your body needs, that solid foods can normally supply. Just be sure that the soups are easy to eat and don’t contain bits that could irritate or infect the area of surgery!


Salmon is an excellent choice after your wisdom teeth removal because it’s soft and easy to chew texture. This makes an excellent main dish as it’s a great source of protein! Also rich in omega-fatty acids, Salmon may even help in the healing process by reducing inflammation!

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What Exactly is a Dental Implant?

What Exactly is a Dental Implant

Missing teeth? No problem. A dental implant is a way to replace an empty void that may be leaving you self-conscious about your smile. Whether the vacant spot is due to a sports injury, facial trauma, periodontal complication, or bad oral hygiene, it can fill the vacancy permanently and give you a boost of confidence. So, what exactly is a dental implant?

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Do You Need Your Wisdom Teeth Removed?


Do You Need Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Getting your wisdom teeth removed seems to be a rite of passage these days. Everyone knows a friend or a family member who has gotten them extracted or even have had them pulled themselves. Aside from enjoying the perks of getting these last set of molars extracted such as getting to miss school or even work for a few days, or the endless and guiltless ice cream soiree, here are the occasional and sometimes painful telltale signs that you need your wisdom teeth removed:
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What to Expect When Expecting (…A Bone Graft)


What to Expect When Expecting A Bone Graft

Need a dental implant but don’t have sufficient jaw bone? Dental implants are the most effective option when it comes to replacing a tooth. However, if in order to successfully get an implant, you need to have an adequate amount of jawbone. If you don’t, then you will need a bone graft before getting the actual implant. Bone grafting is when an oral surgeon will either harvest bone from another part of your body, a cadaver, a deceased animal, or in most cases, use a special bone grafting material to anchor it onto your jaw bone, thus increasing its’ strength and density. Although the procedure may sound pretty scary, we can promise you it’s nothing of the sort. Below are some things to expect when getting a bone graft!
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Healthy Foods for Healthy Smiles!

Healthy Food for Healthy Smiles

A healthy school lunch will not only give your child the energy they need throughout their school day, it will keep their teeth healthy too! Below are some examples of healthy foods that will keep your kid smiling all day long!

PB&J’s! While a popular choice, often times sugary jellies and nut butters are not great for kid’s teeth. Try switching to a natural peanut butter, and a preserve or fruit jam (aim for 5grams or sugar or less per serving). Use whole wheat bread as a healthy alternative too!

Cheese Please! Cheese is high in calcium which is probably one of the most important nutrients for your teeth. It is absorbed by tooth enamel and help block bacteria growth. Without calcium, your kid’s teeth could be in big trouble! Cheese also has protein, which is not only important for the growth and development of children, it also keeps their muscles strong and healthy making for a stronger smile.
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3 Myths About Oral Cancer


There have been many misconceptions about Oral Cancer regarding the severity, prevention and likelihood of being diagnosed with this disease. It’s important to separate fact from fiction by understanding the disease as a whole. Among the numerous myths, I am here to set three of the most common ones straight.


Myth #1: Only Smokers Get It: There are a variety of factors that can cause Oral Cancer, one of them being tobacco and nicotine usage. By smoking you would be increasing your odds of being diagnosed but that doesn’t mean only smokers are at risk for this disease. Alcohol consumption is another factor that can significantly increase your chances of Oral Cancer as well. Genetics can also play a part in the diagnosis, but they don’t guarantee you will get it.
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