Facial Trauma

August 14 20:20 2019 Print This Article

Facial trauma is any injury of the face and upper jaw bone. Facial trauma may present with skin lacerations, obstruction to the nasal cavity or sinuses, damage to the orbital sockets, fracture to the jawbone and missing teeth. It can be caused by a number of events, such as falls, sports injuries, assaults, or motor vehicle accidents.

Treatment depends on the kind of injury. Acute care involves treating loose or knocked-out teeth, suturing skin and soft tissue injuries, and setting and stabilizing fractured bones. Serious accidents or traumatic events may require complex surgical care involving a combination of treatments. Oral and Maxillo facial Surgeon is highly trained and skilled in treating facial lacerations. The principles of treatment for facial bone fractures are the same for a broken arm or leg. The bone fragments must be lined up and held in place long enough to permit them to heal (fixation). This may require 6 or more weeks depending on the patients’ age, general health, and complexity of the fracture.

During the healing period, the Oral and Maxillo facial Surgeon prescribes a specific nutritional diet to help the injury heal as quickly as possible. Oral and Maxillo facial Surgeons are specially trained and highly skilled in treating facial trauma. Facial injuries occur in a critical area of the body and can affect sight, breathing ability, speaking, eating and swallowing and, therefore should not be treated lightly when they occur or symptoms become evident.

Facial injuries can occur any time or any place. Examples include sports-related injuries that can occur during baseball, softball, football, basketball or soccer games. More serious injuries occur with motor vehicle accidents, gunshot wounds or altercations. Facial trauma is often recognized by lacerations (breaks in the skin); bruising around the eyes, widening of the distance between the eyes (which may indicate injury to the bones between the eye sockets); movement of the upper jaw when the head is stabilized (which may indicate a fracture in this area); and abnormal sensations on the cheek.

Causes of Facial Trauma

Find common causes and risk factors of Facial Trauma:

  • Sports injuries.
  • Falls.
  • Work related injuries..
  • Motor vehicle accidents.

Signs and Symptoms of Facial Trauma

Sign and symptoms may include the following:

  • Double vision.
  • Changes in sensation and feeling over the face.
  • Bad bite or malocclusion.
  • Missing teeth.
  • Cuts and bruises.
  • Facial swelling.

Treatment for Facial Trauma

The treatment of facial fractures is the similar for any broken bone in the body. The broken parts must be lined up and held in position to allow for healing. This will require six weeks to allow for proper healing. Fractures that tare extensive may require incisions to expose the bone along with a combination of wiring or plating techniques. In the case of a break of the upper of lower jaw, metal braces will be fastened to the teeth and wires will be used to hold the jaws together. It is important to have your occlusion set properly by an oral & maxillofacial surgeon if the facial fracture involves the upper or lower jaw. Titanium plates may be used to speed healing and allow opening and closing of the jaw while healing. You will be prescribed a special diet while your jaws are wired together along with instructions specific to your fracture. After your jaws have healed, the metal braces and wires will be removed, usually in Dr. Roberson’s office under IV sedation. Treatment may include:

  • Use existing lacerations and incisions in the mouth and around the eye and scalp during surgery to minimize scarring.
  • Control bleeding.
  • Treatment should be immediate, as long as the patient is stable and cleared of all life-threatening injuries and the neck has been cleared of fractures.
  Article "tagged" as: