All About Jaw Fracture
Fractures (or breaks in the bones) are common problems. Any individual really has the tendency of suffering from a fractured arm, finger, or any other parts of the body. There are also main types of fractures: open, closed, complete, and incomplete fracture. Even more, there are really some instances that we cannot avoid which would lead to fracture injury. Because of this, it is necessary to understand the causes, knowing fracture symptoms, and even identifying different ways on how to treat bone fracture. Information is readily accessible through the Web, there is no more reason for us to keep ignoring vital details that may be a lot of help for us later in life when it comes to complete or incomplete fracture of a bone. After all, no one else will greatly benefit from this information other than us and the people around us.
As for this article, we will be talking about jaw fracture or mandibular fracture. Like specific forms of fracture like Jones fracture and kneecap fracture, is specific to certain part of the body. As its name indicates, this form of fracture causes broken jaw. Fractured or dislocated jaw is second to nose dislocation when it comes to facial injuries since it is the nose that is usually fractured. Still, this condition is the 10th most common fracture in the human body. There is no need for us to dig into the details of the types of bone fracture especially this one. We will just go through with the basics for our benefit and easy understanding.
Definition and Overview of Jaw Fracture
A fractured jaw is more clinically known as mandibular fracture because it the mandible (jawbone in a layman’s term) that is broken or cracked. The mandible is the bone that is attached to the skull which allows opening of the mouth. When there is a broken mandible, there are certain problems that would be caused by this.
The demographics of the people who are most likely to suffer from jaw fracture are those male that are between the ages 20 and 29. Still, women have the tendency to have jaw injuries but the likelihood to have one is low. The ratio for jaw problems relating to fractured jaw between men and women is 4:1.
In most cases, the lower jaw is the common area where the jaw bone fracture occurs. However, there are already instances wherein the upper jaw also suffers from fracture or dislocation. Upper jaw fracture can still be similar with lower jaw fracture in many cases and causes. The need for a coastal jaw surgery is required in this kind of jaw fracture.
Causes of Jaw Fracture
Like any forms of fracture, fracture jaw is caused by sudden impact that is brought to the mandible or jawbone. The most common fracture diagnosis that results to jaw dislocation and fracture are vehicular accidents, assaults, injuries from sports, and even fall with great impact. These are the reasons why it is men that are usually the victims of jaw fractures. Still, there can be other causes of mandibular fracture which are all caused by a great impact. Jaw fracture from tooth extraction can also be another cause of this form of fracture though not commonly occurring.
When an individual suffers from one or two of these, there is a need to check out for some symptoms (which will be discussed below) so that proper procedure on how to heal this kind of injury can be done immediately.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
The most common among the broken jaw symptoms is the jaw pain. Just like any other forms of fracture, jaw injury results to pain as well. In addition to this, there is also a misalignment of the teeth. As an individual start feeling that his/her teeth are not anymore in a normal alignment is another possibility of fractured jaw bone. This can be observed by anyone since it will really feel awkward. Other fractured jaw symptoms are bleeding inside the teeth, difficulty in talking and breathing, and swelling of the fractured part.
Still, there are more symptoms of broken jaw bones that we should be careful about. Immediately as an individual encounters the abovementioned causes, the need to check out for sudden changes in the jawbone or its functions is a must. When there is any, seeing the doctor is the first course of action that one needs to do. This way, fracture complications can be avoided. Most importantly, it is the doctor that best knows the procedures that should be done.
Care and Treatment
In immediate instances wherein an individual faces a forceful impact on his/her jawbone, the need for a first aid treatment is a necessity. This first aid treatment would include cold compress to avoid swelling and taking of some prescribed drugs to reduce pain. These are just of the basic things that we need to do to treat jaw fracture. When there are already observed abnormality (as already discussed earlier), it is recommended to consider an X-ray test so that a proper jaw reconstruction surgery can also be planned out afterwards and if needed. Of course, this latter course of action would need the assistance and opinion of a doctor especially the one who specializes on jaw injury.
More importantly, a specialized jaw fracture treatment would be needed to ensure full recovery and quick return to normal state. This is to avoid further complication that may just make it hard to correct the problem. In addition, there are also certain medicines that need to be taken when there are already swelling and pain especially when jaw fracture symptoms are already surfacing.
Though our body is capable of its own jaw reconstruction, there is still a need to use advanced means to correct the problem. The basic and most common fractured jaw treatment is fracture surgery. This is a corrective jaw surgery that aims to normalize the jawbone and bring it back to its natural function which includes the standard state of the teeth, breathing, and speech. The jaw surgery is the best way to secure that an individual does not have to suffer from further problems caused by the fractured bone. In addition, when an individual is suffering from an upper jaw fracture another form of jaw fracture surgery would be needed. They call an upper jaw surgery as the maxillofacial jaw surgery which only focuses on the upper jaw that has been broken or dislocated due to similar causes stated earlier. Jaw surgery recovery may actually take some time but it would really be worth the wait. During the process of rehabilitation, it is also at this point that fractured jaw recovery can be achieved. The fracture healing time would vary on the capability and metabolism of the individual. Being impatient and not waiting for the jaw fracture recovery time to be complete will do you no good. Instead, it is best to wait until all jaw injuries are healed before resuming your usual activities.
When the jaw fracture surgery is done, there would be a need for special fracture jaw diet. This is due to the fact that there is still a need to immobilize the fractured area to avoid fracture complications and more jaw pain. In addition, this would help in the recovery time of the individual to become quick. Though the body is naturally curing itself from conditions such as fracture, there is still the need to wear brace/braces to align the bone fracture. A fracture cast is only one of the necessary things that an individual should have to have a full recovery from the condition.
Still, there are yet to learn about this form of fracture. Just like any classification of fracture, it is necessary that we learn the basics so that we would also know the bone fracture treatment that we have to go through. Most importantly in the case of jaw fracture, we need to know and prepare ourselves with the broken jaw surgery that we might have to undergo is faced in a certain condition.
We must remember that the start of everything is knowledge. At the same time, there can be no other thing that can save us other than the little knowledge that we take in regarding this matter. This might just become a great help for us in due time.