Traumatic Tooth Injury
Whether you or a child has a traumatic tooth injury, you don't have to lose that tooth. As endodontists, we are in the business of saving teeth. We do everything we can to save traumatically injured teeth at our Thibodaux and Houma locations.
Types of Traumatic Tooth Injuries
Traumatic tooth injuries happen quickly and can include dislodged teeth and avulsed teeth. Both types of injuries, whether in adults or children, need an endodontist's attention for evaluation and treatment.
Dislodged teeth happen if the tooth pushes into the socket, moves to the side, or pulls out of place. Often, a blow to the face can cause this type of injury, often during impact sports.
Don't try to pull the tooth back into position yourself. Go to an endodontist who can look at the injury. The force of the tooth going into the socket could have damaged the root, necessitating root canal therapy to repair it.
A knocked-out tooth needs emergency treatment to raise the likelihood that the replacement will succeed. If you have an avulsed tooth, try to replace it in the socket or carry it to the endodontist in a glass of milk. Get treatment within half an hour to reduce the risk of the body not allowing the tooth to reset. Both our Houma and Thibodaux locations offer after-hours emergency care for patients with dentist referrals and our patients of record.
Treatment for Traumatic Tooth Injuries
How we treat traumatic injuries will depend on multiple factors, so two patients with similar injuries may receive different types of care. However, we will do everything possible to stabilize the tooth and prevent infection and loss.
Treatment for Dislodged Teeth
When you see us for a dislodged tooth, we will gently replace it into its correct position and splint it to stabilize it. In most cases, dislodged adult teeth will need root canal therapy.
To prevent infections and complications from damage to the tooth's root when it becomes dislodged, we'll perform root canal therapy on the tooth a few days or weeks after the incident. As part of the process, you'll get medication inside the tooth to promote healing. After a follow-up visit, when we evaluate the root canal's healing, we'll place a permanent filling or request that you see your dentist for a crown.
Treatment of Avulsed Teeth
Avulsed teeth treated quickly and handled carefully have the lowest chances of permanent loss. The cells at the root end of the tooth will play a role in reattaching the tooth in the socket. Don't wash off the tooth unless you need to rinse the crown with water to remove dirt.
We'll place the tooth into the socket and may splint it for a couple of weeks. Like dislodged teeth, most knocked-out adult teeth need root canal therapy.
Make sure to keep up with follow-up exams with your dentist or endodontist to ensure the treated tooth continues to heal properly.
Treating Traumatic Tooth Injuries in Children
Children have differences inside their teeth that make treatment for traumatic injuries unique to this group. Since kids' teeth have still-growing and developing roots, treatments following injuries may not include root canals. Instead, endodontists take advantage of the growing teeth and perform one of the following less-invasive treatments:
In some children who still have developing tooth roots, the endodontist may elect to promote healthy growth with apexogenesis. Instead of removing everything from inside the tooth, as occurs with a root canal, the endodontist applies medicine to stimulate healthy pulp and root growth.
When apexogenesis succeeds, the tooth recovers well after an injury, the root matures properly, and the root canal walls grow enough to provide adequate support for the tooth.
For some kids, apexogenesis may not suffice to save the tooth. Treatment of traumatic injuries for these kids involves apexification. The endodontist takes out unhealthy or infected pulp from inside the tooth but leaves healthy matter. They then place a substance at the tip of the root to solidify the area and create a barrier for the filling. The created barrier stops the tooth's root and canal walls from growing.
If your child received apexification, they need to take extra care of the tooth because its less-developed walls make the tooth weaker to future damage.
Emergency Care for Traumatic Tooth Injury Houma and Thibodaux
We serve the Tri-Parish area with locations in Houma and Thibodaux. Contact your nearest location for traumatic tooth injury treatment. Don't risk losing a tooth to an injury. Get care at once from us at Southern Endodontic Specialists.