Dental trauma occurs when there is a serious injury to the teeth or jawbone, ranging from sports injuries, and falls, to accidents. This type of trauma can cause simple and relatively harmless injuries such as a lip laceration or can be more extensive, such as a fracture to the tooth or jawbone. If you have experienced any dental trauma, the goal at our Lincoln Center Smiles office is to help save the permanent teeth from any lasting damage.
Types of Dental Trauma
When you experience dental trauma, you may experience any number of injuries to your teeth and jawline. A fracture of the tooth causes cracks or chips in the tooth and can reach the root of your tooth. Lateral luxation is when the tooth is displaced, and the bone underneath is fractured. Intrusion occurs when the tooth is pushed into the bone, while extrusion is when the tooth is pushed out of the bone. Subluxation affects the mobility of the tooth and occurs when the support structures of it are injured. An avulsion is when the tooth is completely displaced out of the socket, which can result in permanent tooth loss if not immediately fixed. Other types of injuries include complicated and uncomplicated root fracture, enamel infraction, enamel fracture, alveolar fracture, enamel-dentin fracture, and enamel-dentin-pulp fracture. You can experience several types of dental trauma due to any related injuries to your teeth or jawbone and require immediate attention.
What Do I Do If My Tooth Is Knocked Out?
If any dental trauma resulted in your tooth being completely knocked out, it is considered a dental emergency that needs to be treated within the first two hours of damage. Your teeth are connected to the bone through your periodontal ligaments (PDL), which can survive up to two hours after your tooth is dislodged. You should call our office immediately to schedule an emergency surgery, where we will work quickly to get the tooth back into your mouth once you arrive. Keep your tooth in saliva or milk, which will prolong the survivability of the PDL on your tooth and give the procedure a higher chance of success.
Treatment Options for Other Types of Dental Trauma
If you have suffered dental trauma, our team will first take an x-ray of your mouth and physically examine it. This allows us to identify the exact type of dental trauma you have experienced and gives us a better chance of treating it correctly. Treatment is wide-ranging depending on your dental trauma.
Most trauma requires the tooth to be repositioned and a splint placed over it for 14 days to help stabilize it. Our team will monitor the vitality of the tooth during these two weeks. If the tooth is not vital, we may recommend a root canal. During the stabilization period, you will be required to only eat soft foods that do not interfere with the recovery of the tooth. We will still recommend coming in for periodic checkups after the stabilization period, if a root canal was not advised, to continue monitoring the tooth. This will ensure the recovery of your tooth and help us identify any prolonged issues you may experience.
If you recently suffered from dental trauma, it is important to get your teeth checked out as soon as possible. The longer you wait to schedule an appointment, the more likely it is that you will experience issues in the future with your damaged teeth. Contact our Lincoln Center Smiles office today at (503) 598-0898 to schedule an appointment to get your dental trauma examined and treated.