Injuries to your mouth or surrounding face, known as facial trauma or oral and maxillofacial trauma, are serious. Whether lacerations, burns, injuries to the teeth or bone fractures, they need to be addressed, even if you do not think them to be all that serious. An experienced oral and maxillofacial surgeon for facial trauma will provide you with the best aesthetic and functional results. National Dental Hicksville can help.
What Causes Facial Trauma?
Facial trauma has many different causes, such as:
- Car accidents: This is one of the leading causes of facial trauma.
- Falls: These can happen for a variety of reasons, such as slipping on ice or tripping on stairs.
- Sports-related injuries: Collision while playing sports can lead to serious facial trauma.
- Getting into a physical fight
Types of Facial Trauma
There are a few different types of facial trauma that can occur:
- Soft tissue injuries: These types of injuries include such things as burns, contusions, and lacerations both inside and outside the mouth.
- Bone injuries: Fractures to facial bones, whether your jaw, your nose, your eye sockets or even your forehead, require special attention.
- Injuries to your teeth: Facial trauma can knock your teeth deeper into their sockets, partially dislodge them, or even knock them out completely.
Soft Tissue Injuries
The inside of your mouth, as well as outside of it, is covered in soft tissue. This tissue is delicate. Depending upon the type of facial trauma you experience, your soft tissue may sustain burns, lacerations, contusions or other injuries. Your soft tissues contain many blood vessels and nerves. Some areas also contain salivary glands and ducts. Seeking the help of a highly trained oral and maxillofacial surgeon is important. Not only can they help to restore the aesthetics of your face, but they can also help to restore the functions of your nerves, salivary glands, and ducts.
When bones are fractured, the need to be set. However, setting facial bones is very different from setting an arm or a leg. Your face and jaw cannot be placed in a cast. However, there are other ways to set fractured bones. One way is through wiring your jaw. By wiring, we are helping to stabilize your jawbone so that it can heal. While effective, wiring your jaw has one major disadvantage – you do not have the function of your jaw as you heal.
The other option for setting fractured facial bones is with plates and screws. These work together to hold fractured bones in place so that they can heal. They allow you regular use of your jaw as you heal. In some cases, the plates and screws may be left in place even after your bones have fully set.
In many instances of facial trauma, your teeth are also affected. In some cases, they may become lodged deeper into their sockets. We can work to put the affected teeth back in their proper position. A splint may be required to hold the teeth in place while the bone and periodontal ligaments heal. The same tactics may be used if you have teeth that are partially dislodged from their sockets.
In the instance that you have a tooth or two that are completely knocked out, it is possible to have the tooth replanted. If the tooth is knocked out cleanly, find the tooth and rinse it off, being careful not to touch the root end. Then, store the tooth in a jar of milk until you can get to the office for treatment. We will work to replant the tooth. If this is not possible, we will discuss options for replacement.
If you have experienced facial trauma, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon is a must. Contact National Dental Hicksville right away at (516) 629-5086.