• federal way: (253) 839-5721
  • auburn: (253) 833-9066

Facial Trauma

Facial TraumaDr. Sabbagh of Sabbagh Oral Surgery in Federal Way, Auburn,WA, and Issaquah has extensive training in the management of facial trauma, broken jaws and broken teeth. Hopefully you will never need an expert oral surgeon for a broken jaw but if you do, call Dr. Sabbagh at 253-833-9066 or 253-839-5721 for an emergency visit if you have been told by an emergency room doctor that you have a broken jaw.

Dr. Emily M. Sabbagh is a provider for many insurances and her knowledgeable staff will help you with your insurance questions.

Broken Teeth

Sports injuries or car accidents can injure the mouth. When the teeth are bumped or broken they may become loose and must be evaluated by your family dentist or oral surgeon. Oral surgeons are trained in stabilization of alveolar fractures which are fractures of the bone that supports the teeth. Any injury to the mouth should be evaluated immediately to avoid complications.

What is stabilization of teeth?

Stabilization of loose teeth as a result of mouth injury is important because the teeth can not function or heal when they are loose. The worst case would be if they heal crooked and must be re broken to be properly realigned. The best time to receive treatment is shortly after the injury.

How do I know my teeth are injured?

After a blow to the jaw if your teeth do not go together properly or you feel you cannot close your teeth properly, you may have fractured alveolar bone or the bone that surrounds the teeth. Often if the tooth is injured it may discolor and require endodontics as well. Dr. Sabbagh can evaluate the problem by a thorough examination and most likely x rays. The x rays and clinical examination will help determine the degree of injury to the teeth.

What x-rays are necessary to evaluate facial trauma?

Depending on the areas of injury, a digital panoramic radiograph will be taken at Dr. Sabbagh’s office. This film is most often covered by dental insurance. If Dr. Sabbagh feels due to the location of your injury you require additional radiographic images, she may refer you to a radiology center or hospital.

Dr. Emily M. Sabbagh will do everything to minimize your expense for x rays. If you require additional x rays, MRI, or CT scan, Dr. Sabbagh works closely with local hospitals and radiology centers so you can apply your medical insurance for any needed imaging studies.

If you require a CT scanner or cone beam CT she will refer you to a center where you can use your medical insurance and not incur an additional in house expense at her office. Your CT image if necessary will be read in collaboration with board certified radiologists for the best possible diagnosis. Dr. Sabbagh's caring and highly trained medical and dental billing coordinator is always there to assist you in insurance questions and find the best possible way to utilize your dental and medical insurance.

Once the proper diagnosis is made from review of your x rays and clinical examination, Dr. Sabbagh will discuss with you the next step in repair of the loose teeth. Dr. Sabbagh is licensed in General Anesthesia for your comfort. Depending on the degree of injury and your medical history, she will advise which type of anesthesia is best for you. Dr. Sabbagh will customize the type of treatment for you or your loved one.

Broken Jaws

When the lower and upper jaw become fractured, the bone segments separate and it is difficult to chew. The teeth do not come together correctly. If the fractured jaw is not reduced or stabilized in a timely fashion, the patient risks a non union or a maligned jaw. One method of repairing a broken jaw is to wire the jaw shut. This is done to properly align the teeth as well as to ensure proper healing of the fracture site. The bone segments may be further stabilized by additional wire or plates. Wiring the jaw shut requires arch bars and interdental wires. These arch bars enable the oral surgeon to immobilize the the top jaw to the bottom jaw for several weeks. This immobilization allows the fracture to heal properly. If the segments move prematurely, the jaw may not heal properly. Usually if the jaw is broken it must be reduced within a few days. The sooner the jaw is immobilized the better. Delaying the reduction of a jaw fracture can result in a fibrous non union, TMJ problems and a malocclusion.

When do the wires of a broken jaw come off?

Usually for many fractures of the jaw, healing is a six week process. After six weeks, the wires may be removed that secures the top jaw to the bottom jaw and the arch bars may be left on as a precaution in the event the jaw requires further immobilization. In these cases rubber bands or heavy elastic bands are placed between the top and bottom arch bars to provide some movement but not complete mobility. Finally when the jaw is determined by the oral surgeon to be healed, the arch bars are removed. This may be performed under IV anesthesia for your comfort. Dr. Emily M. Sabbagh received formal training in anesthesia at the prestigious University of Pennsylvania. Call Dr. Sabbagh at 253-833-9066 or 253-839-5721 for an appointment or simply request an appointment online by our always secure on line request form. Dr. Sabbagh is a provider for many dental insurances.