Facial injuries damage facial bones, skin, and teeth, carrying with them a fair amount of emotional and physical trauma. Violence, falls, work-related injuries, sports injuries, and automotive accidents are all causes of facial and dental trauma. Facial injuries are usually classified as bone injuries (fractures), soft tissue injuries (affecting gums and skin), or injuries to special regions like eyes, salivary glands, and facial nerves.
Fortunately, Dallas Oral Surgery Associates’s team of skilled oral surgeons are trained in acute treatment, replacing teeth, emergency care, mouth reconstruction, and patient rehabilitation.
Treating Facial Injuries
When facial bones suffer fractures, they are treated similarly to fractures elsewhere in the body. The patient’s age, overall health, and the location and severity of the fracture will determine what kind of treatment is called for. Arm and leg fractures are treated with casts to stabilize the bone so it can heal properly. But since a cast won’t work on the face, we have other ways to treat facial fractures.
One option of treating certain fractures of the upper and lower jaws is to wire the jaws together. Other types of fractures of the jaw are more effectively treated by surgically placing small screws and plates in the affected area. This treatment method, known as rigid fixation, also allows for ease of healing and prevents us from having to wire the jaws shut. Rigid fixation is a recent development in oral surgery and has vastly improved the healing period for many patients, allowing them to return to their usual activities faster.
We strive to treat facial fractures such as these precisely and thoroughly, making only the smallest number of incisions and causing as few changes to the patient’s facial appearance as possible.
Learn more about treating facial injuries.
Treating Injuries to the Teeth and Nearby Structures
It is not unusual to see teeth that have suffered isolated injuries. Such cases might need the combined expertise of multiple dental experts. In such situations, our team of oral surgeons will need to replant teeth if they are dislodged or knocked out, and treat fractures in the supporting bone. If faced with this type of injury, we have a number of splinting methods available. Splinting means stabilizing teeth by bonding or wiring them back together.
If one of your teeth is knocked out, put it in milk or salt water. Doing so will preserve it better. Do not wipe the tooth off. Remnants of the ligament that secures the tooth in the jaw still remain and are crucial to inserting the tooth back into your mouth. To maximize the chances of saving the tooth, we must insert it back into the dental socket as soon as possible, so come into our office right away.
We will do our best to reattach the original tooth, but if this is not possible, other tooth replacement options are available. Dental implants are the most successful method, but we will evaluate your condition to see if that’s the best option for you.
For more information, please contact our office at 214-363-9946