Facial Trauma


There are many causes of maxillofacial traumas. Vehicle accidents, work-related accidents, sports injuries, accidental falls, and interpersonal violence can leave a person vulnerable to severe facial injuries. These may be addressed by well-trained oral and maxillofacial surgeons in a variety of ways. Common facial traumas include these injuries:

  • Facial lacerations
  • Intra oral lacerations
  • Avulsed (knocked out) teeth
  • Fractured facial bones (cheek, nose or eye socket)
  • Fractured jaws (upper and lower jaw)


When emergency care is needed for you or your child’s teeth, you need the help of a highly trained specialist. Fortunately, Dr. Nolen and Dr. Fernando are on call at local hospitals. They can deliver emergency room coverage for facial injuries. As well-trained oral and maxillofacial surgeons, they can address facial injuries on the spot and prepare patients for long-term treatments where necessary. Services include:

  • On-Call ER and Hospital Emergency Care
  • Acute Treatment
  • Long-Term Reconstruction and Rehabilitation
  • Soft tissue repair after Maxillofacial Trauma
  • Bone fracture repair after Maxillofacial Trauma
  • Teeth repair after Maxillofacial Trauma


To protect soft tissue and repair damage, your oral and maxillofacial surgeon will diagnose and treat facial lacerations with special care for the final cosmetic results.


Facial fractures require stabilization, much as you would stabilize a leg with a cast. One common jaw treatment is surgical placement of small plates and screws. Another is wiring the jaw shut until healing can occur. However, a new technique eliminates the need to wire the jaws shut. Rigid fixation of a fracture has been shown to achieve the same or better results, allowing patients to return to normal more quickly. Once again, care is taken by Dr. Nolen and Dr. Fernando to protect the patient’s facial appearance, minimizing incisions to reduce scarring.


If a tooth injury should occur, it is essential to preserve the tooth in salt water or milk. Do not wipe the tooth off since ligament may still be attached. Call and explain your emergency to your general dentist first since an oral surgeon may not be required. The sooner the tooth can be put back into the dental socket, the better the chance that it will reattach.

Oral surgeons generally get involved with these isolated injuries when a form of splinting is needed. Wiring or bonding teeth together is a specialty that requires an oral surgeon. If there is a problem that requires bone grafts or teeth replanting, an oral surgeon is needed.

Certainly in extreme cases involving the jaw and teeth, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon is needed to save and repair teeth. If it is too late to save the teeth, dental implants may prevent bone deterioration and other long-term problems.