Concussion Injuries/Dental Trauma

Children are active at play and in sports. That sometimes puts them at risk of a concussion injury or dental trauma. Dental trauma in kids may have long-lasting consequences. Right after the accident or injury, you may need an emergency visit, but remember that hospitals aren’t equipped for dental injuries. You need to schedule an appointment with your pediatric dentist at Tiny Smiles Pediatric Dentistry — in Woodbridge, New Jersey, Harlem and the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Don’t wait for symptoms; call right away.

What Are Concussion Injuries in Kids?

A concussion injury is a blow to the head that may cause a loss of consciousness, a head injury and damage to teeth or the soft tissues of the mouth. A concussion injury may involve other medical problems and demand immediate medical treatment.

Concussion injuries in kids require emergency attention because of the delicate nature of a child’s skull. Children are at a critical stage of development, so any head injury may have devastating and long-term effects if not treated quickly. The same can be said of dental injuries, given how teeth develop in children.

At the nearest Tiny Smiles Pediatric Dentistry office — whether in Manahattan or in Woodbridge, New Jersey — the experienced team of board certified dentists treats a wide range of childhood dental issues and injuries. The dentists quickly assess if a concussion injury has caused dental problems and then create a treatment plan for your child.

What’s Dental Trauma in Kids?

Dental trauma refers to a severe injury to any part of your child’s mouth. The injuries may affect multiple parts of a child’s mouth, including:

Severe dental trauma for a child requires emergency and urgent care by a trained pediatric dentist. At the dental practice in Harlem, the Lower East Side or Woodbridge, NJ, the team uses the latest medical equipment to handle dental emergencies and prevent future complications. In the event of a concussion or dental trauma, seek treatment in an emergency room, but then call your child’s dentist.

Emergency & Urgent Care

Children are at risk of head injuries because they can be reckless or careless. If a sporting accident occurs, look for symptoms that may signal a concussion injury. These signs include:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Memory loss
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Feeling hazy, sluggish, foggy or groggy
  • Drowsiness and failure to respond when addressing them
  • A dazed look, disorientation or shock
  • Decreased coordination
  • Pain long after the accident

A big blow to the head may cause debilitating damage to your child’s delicate skull. The child may not cry immediately after the accident, but may cry later. Dental trauma is common in cases of concussive sports injuries.

What Are the Symptoms of Dental Trauma in Kids?

If your child complains of a sharp pain inside the mouth after a playground accident, dental trauma one possible cause. Symptoms of dental trauma in kids include:

  • Fractured, missing, cracked, chipped or out-of-place teeth
  • Pain or stiffness when trying to open or close the mouth or jaw
  • Misaligned or crooked teeth
  • Swelling in the tongue
  • Bleeding from soft tissue around the mouth, including the gums, cheek, tongue or lips
  • A sharp pain around the mouth
  • A loose or broken tooth after the accident
  • Swelling and tenderness of the lips or jaw

Your pediatric dentist examines the symptoms and listens to your child explain what’s wrong. Sometimes, your child needs further tests to determine the extent of damage. The findings help the dentist develop an individualized treatment plan.

What Are the Types of Dental Injuries in Kids?

When diagnosing a concussion, the best pediatric dentists give your child a thorough exam, deferring to medical doctors if the concussion symptoms are severe enough. After a serious accident, your child may suffer different kinds of dental injuries, including:

  • Damage to teeth. Damage to a tooth’s crown or a fracture of its root beneath the gums is both painful and dangerous.
  • Tissue damage. Dental trauma may affect both soft and hard tissues supporting the teeth and gums.
  • Subluxation injury. An injury that causes the tooth to becomes loose in its socket may lead to an extraction of the tooth.
  • Avulsion of the tooth. A dental injury in which the child’s tooth comes out of its socket completely may be repaired.
  • Intrusion or extrusion injury. This dental injury causes the tooth to sink deeper into the socket or move partially out of the socket.

If your kids need extra protection against dental cavities, talk to your dentist about dental sealants. The preventive dental procedure may even prevent other oral problems, such as halitosis. Contact your dental sealant specialist at Tiny Smiles Pediatric Dentistry in Woodbridge, NJ or in Manhattan on the Lower East Side and in Harlem.

What’s the Treatment for Dental Trauma?

The treatment plan that your family dentist chooses depends on multiple factors, including the severity of the damage, symptoms of the concussion injury, parts of the mouth affected and the child’s age. Treatment options include:

  • First aid immediately after a concussion injury
  • Smoothing chipped or rough edges of damaged teeth
  • Root canal therapy for mature teeth
  • Orthodontic care to reposition teeth after an intrusive injury
  • Replanting an avulsed permanent tooth
  • A stabilizing splint for a replaced tooth

If your child has an accident involving dental trauma, make sure you visit a dentist for a thorough check-up. Some signs of a concussion and dental trauma may not show immediately, but waiting could lead to complications. The experienced dentists at Tiny Smiles Pediatric Dentistry in New Jersey and in New York City know what to look for in such emergencies.

Dental trauma injuries depend on the nature of the injury, the location of the affected teeth, the severity of the injury and other factors. Your NJ or NYC pediatric dentist only prescribes treatment after an assessment of your child’s condition. Contact the best New Jersey dentist today if you suspect a concussion injury or dental trauma in kids.

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