Traumatic Injuries to the Mouth

Dislodged Teeth

Injuries to the mouth can cause teeth to be pushed back into their sockets. Dr. Ronald Wollard, Dr. Chad Wollard or your general dentist may reposition and stabilize your tooth. Root canal treatment is usually started within a few weeks of the injury and a medication, such as calcium hydroxide, will be placed inside the tooth. Eventually, a permanent root canal filling will be implanted.

Sometimes a tooth may be pushed partially out of the socket. Again, Dr. Ronald Wollard, Dr. Chad Wollard or your general dentist may reposition and stabilize your tooth. If the pulp remains healthy, then no other treatment is necessary. Yet, if the pulp becomes damaged or infected, root canal treatment will be required. If left untreated, many different complications can arise. These complications can include but are not limited to: Infection of the tooth, root system or surrounding tissue, inadequate hygiene due to an inability to properly clean the dislodged tooth and the gums, and loss of the tooth.

Avulsed Teeth  

If an injury causes a tooth to be completely knocked out of your mouth, it is important that you are treated immediately!  First, locate the tooth.  If the tooth has fallen on the ground and has dirt or other foreign debris on the surface of the root gently rinse it with water to remove the debris.  Do Not scrub the root surface.  Once the tooth has been rinsed and is free of any foreign debris try and position the tooth back into the socket.  This will help maintain the blood supply to the periodontal ligament that covers the root surface.  Maintaining the blood supply to the periodontal ligament will result in a more favorable long term prognosis for the tooth.  If you are unable to adequately clean the debris off of the root surface or are unable to reposition the tooth in the socket then try and keep the tooth moist.  A tooth can be saved if it remains moist. You can even put the tooth in milk or a glass of water (add a pinch of salt.)  Dr. Ronald Wollard or Dr. Chad Wollard may start root canal treatment based upon the stage of root development. The length of time the tooth was out of your mouth and the way the tooth was stored, may influence the type of treatment you receive.  

Tooth Injuries in Children

An injured immature tooth may need one of the following procedures to improve the chances of saving the tooth:

Apexogenesis

This procedure encourages the root to continue development as the pulp is healed. Soft tissue is covered with medication to encourage growth. The tip of the root (apex) will continue to close as the child gets older. In turn, the walls of the root canal will thicken. If the pulp heals, no additional treatment will be necessary. The more mature the root becomes, the better the chance to save the tooth.

Apexification

In this case, the unhealthy pulp is removed. The doctors place medication into the root to help a hard tissue form near the root tip. This hardened tissue provides a barrier for the root canal filling. At this point, the root canal walls will not continue to develop, making the tooth susceptible to fractures. So it is important to have the tooth properly restored by your dentist.