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What is Considered a Facial Trauma

If you have ever been involved in any kind of contact sport, had a traumatic injury on your face, or have even just fallen on the ground before there’s a good chance that you’ve damaged your face.

The muscles in your face are very strong and capable of holding up to a lot of force. Your muscles are also very quick and capable of forcing your facial bones apart, thus protecting your teeth and other bones inside your head. As I’ve said before, if you’re not careful, you can seriously hurt yourself because you just don’t realize how strong your facial muscles can be in certain situations.

Before we get into the specifics we need to first talk about what is considered a facial trauma. According to the website plastic surgery.org, “Facial trauma is any injury that occurs to the face, mouth or neck that requires medical attention. Common facial traumas include fractured jaws, broken noses, facial lacerations, and severe burns”.

As you can see from the above source, facial trauma is pretty much anything that happens to your face. But what are some of the most common types of injuries to your face? According to healthline.com, “Facial injuries include lacerations and fractures of the bones around the eye (orbit), as well as damage to the nose, cheeks, lips, jaw, and chin”.

It’s not uncommon for cuts inside your mouth to occur from a facial trauma because your tongue has a very thick layer of muscle on it that is capable of cutting through tissue pretty easily. Another common injury that occurs during a facial trauma is chipped teeth. Why? Just think about when you bite off a really big piece of something. If you take it all in at once, your teeth are going to have to bite hard. Again, your teeth can handle the pressure but the enamel on the outside of your teeth will most likely crack and chip off.

The website plastic surgery.org also lists the following injuries as facial traumas: burns and swelling of the face, bone fractures, (including jaw, cheekbone, and eye socket), an ear infection that spreads to the surrounding tissues, and facial infections such as staphylococcus aureus or strep.

Hold on for one second and let me explain that last sentence. I know it’s a little bit confusing so I’ll break it down for you. A facial trauma could lead to an ear infection spreading to the surrounding tissues and then a facial infection. But what does that mean? Both of these infections can have a serious impact on your face and are considered life-threatening injuries.

Smoke inhalation is also seen as a life-threatening injury because it can affect your airways by filling them with smoke. There’s also the chance that your airways can swell and close up, thus suffocating you as you inhale. Face injuries are no joke so I hope this information is helpful.

Before we move on I just want to give you the one more important thing to remember:

If you do happen to get hurt in any kind of contact sport always go see a doctor immediately. You never know what might be wrong until the doctor has had a chance to look at it. Always be safe and go see a doctor if you do experience any kind of facial trauma.

Levels of facial trauma

Facial trauma is classified into six different levels:

  • A Level I facial trauma is minor; it may involve some bruising or loosened teeth.
  • A Level II facial trauma involves a fracture of the nose, lips, or jaw.
  • A Level III facial trauma may also involve damage to the eye socket or cheekbones.
  • A Level IV facial trauma may cause total fractures of the face and jaw.
  • A Level V facial trauma is considered severe and survival is unlikely unless medical assistance is received immediately.

More details about facial trauma

All the bones in the face are wired together by ligaments that support the joints, so a minor injury can be extremely serious if it causes a joint to move out of alignment. The bones of the face support soft tissue, so even minor injuries can cause a lot of damage.

Depending upon the type and severity of facial trauma, treatment may involve surgery to restore the appearance, filing down teeth, or reconstructing a damaged bone. An avulsion is a surgical procedure to remove tissue that has been torn off during injury.

Many patients who suffer facial trauma are children, who frequently suffer damage not only to the face but also to other parts of the body. This can result in permanent facial disfigurement, which may prevent these children from attending school or making friends.

The depressed skull fracture most commonly occurs when a child is struck by a falling object and then inadvertently falls on the same object. The ringbone fracture, which occurs when a child falls backward during an unintentional fall, is usually not as serious.

Many times the cause of facial trauma is unknown. A doctor may be able to help by making a diagnosis and determining the appropriate treatment methods. The doctor must become familiar with the type of facial trauma that has occurred and identify any injuries that may have been sustained in other parts of the body. This will provide a baseline for future care.

Doctors evaluate the patient’s characteristics to determine the severity of facial trauma. The doctor will then decide if the injury should be treated by a plastic surgeon or a general surgeon. Plastic surgery may be offered for those patients who are unable to live with the disfigurement of facial injuries, as well as for injuries that are severe enough to cause instability in other parts of their face (for example, damage to the eyes or a cheekbone).

Most facial fractures will heal spontaneously with rest and immobilization. However, in some cases, it is necessary to have surgery to repair the damage. Facial injuries should be diagnosed quickly to prevent infection and prolong healing time.

The term “avulsion fracture” is used when the injury occurs to the soft tissues of the face. It is a crack that connects two bones, which can be caused by an accident or an intentional act such as self-mutilation or self-inflicted violence.

Most avulsions are caused by sporting accidents, from falls from a height, or in the military.

There are two types of avulsion fractures: traumatic an avulsion and surgical an avulsion.

Traumatic avulsions are usually caused by blunt trauma. Common associated injuries include blunt force trauma to the face, facial fracture, and orbital trauma. Surgical avulsions occur when dermal attachments of facial tissue are intentionally resected.

The term “compound fracture” is used when there is a break through the skin. This type of facial trauma may occur when a bone exits the skin during an accident or if the bone is struck by something or someone in an area that can cause an exit wound.

If the patient’s bones are not broken, the doctor may be able to stabilize and protect the area with surgical techniques such as applying splints, using casts, or using engineered facial templates. If the injury is severe enough, further treatment might include surgery.

The facial bones hold important parts of the face together and help protect it from injury.

You can learn more about who is fantastic with all types of facial procedures.

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