Summer is just around the corner! While that means more outdoor fun with friends and family, it can also mean an increased risk of injuries—especially for kids.
Various factors make summertime the perfect time of year for trauma, including higher temperatures and increased physical activity.
When most people think of summertime injuries, they think of things like heat stroke, twisted ankles, and broken arms. While those are common, it’s important not to forget about the dental trauma that can occur, like broken, cracked, knocked out, or loose teeth.
Thankfully, the team at Renovo Endodontic Studio provides trauma management for several types of dental emergencies.
Everyone is at risk for sustaining an injury during the summer months, though children are most likely to experience trauma. The main reason for this is that children are simply more active and spend more time outdoors than adults, in part because they’re out of school. On the other hand, parents spend a lot of time working indoors, thereby reducing their risk of injury. Additionally, kids spend even more time outdoors because the days are longer.
A 2020 study in Hong Kong found that adolescents are more likely to experience injury when engaging in moderate-to-vigorous-intensity or vigorous-intensity physical activities. We can classify many summer sports or games that kids play as all-out activities, including:
Children are more prone to trauma with contact sports. However, even something as simple as running and tripping due to fatigue or heat exhaustion can result in damage to some part of their body.
A recent scientific analysis of dental injuries in children found that the highest frequency of traumas occurred in kids with permanent dentition. The most common type of damage is called an Ellis class IV fracture, a significant front tooth fracture that exposes the pulp/nerve of the tooth. Researchers found that boys are most likely to experience this type of trauma.
A tooth can fracture from something as simple as an accidental fall. It can also occur when a child sustains a hit to the face by a ball or playmate.
Other common dental injuries include:
While we would love to protect our children from ever sustaining trauma, that’s unfortunately not possible. That said, there are some injuries we can help prevent.
If your children engage in sports, our Renovo endodontic team highly recommends investing in sports guards. Unfortunately, a 2019 Delta Dental sponsored survey found that over 70% of student athletes play without a sports guard.
In 2019, the American Dental Association (ADA) reviewed multiple studies and analyses comparing the prevalence of sports-related trauma in athletes that wore sports guards with those that didn’t. The report shows that athletes that don’t wear sports guards are two to five times more likely to sustain dental injuries (depending on the sport).
If you or your child experiences a dental emergency, there are four ways our team can help.
When a tooth sustains damage, the pulp often becomes inflamed and irritated. With time, a bruised tooth can heal on its own. However, in some cases, the injury is so traumatic that the pulp tissue dies. During this process, the patient can experience:
Our team will perform root canal treatment (RCT) to save the tooth and relieve the patient’s discomfort. An RCT involves removing the pulp tissue, cleaning the tooth’s canals, and filling those canals to stabilize the tooth and prevent bacteria from entering.
When someone gets hit in the mouth, some of their teeth can become loose. Fortunately, this doesn’t automatically mean that the patient needs an extraction. By splinting the loose teeth together, we can stabilize the teeth so they can heal.
Another option is regenerative therapy, which replaces damaged, diseased, or infected pulp tissue with viable tissue (from nearby stem cells). The procedure helps restore normal function and is an ideal option for children who are still developing.
Due to costs or the extent of the damage, some patients need or prefer to have a damaged tooth extracted. We can perform the extraction in addition to replacing the tooth with a dental implant.
Dental implants help stabilize the jawbone, the surrounding soft tissues, and the adjacent teeth. With a dental implant, you won’t experience the teeth shifting or loss of teeth or bone common after an extraction.
When someone experiences trauma, it’s hard to know what to do next because of shock. Just remember this: In cases of severe trauma, especially to the head and neck or potential concussion, call 911. If only teeth are involved with the trauma, call Renovo and our helpful staff will walk you through what to do next over the phone.
We understand how scary a dental emergency can be, whether you’re the one who has gotten injured or you’ve witnessed someone else have the experience. It’s the goal of every endodontist at Renovo Endodontic Studio to quickly relieve our patients’ pain and manage the trauma, all while easing their minds.
When you visit our practice, you’ll find a caring, compassionate team that will do all they can to provide you with the very best care. We’ll take the time to discuss your treatment options in-depth so you can make the best decision. Each endodontist is also open to discussing your case with their colleagues, providing you with a second opinion so you can feel confident in the treatment plan you choose.
If you or someone you love experiences a dental emergency, please contact us immediately for an appointment. Our diverse team will provide you with outstanding care and support while easing your pain, discomfort, and anxiety.