Dr Mark Austin: Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery’s Role in Treating Facial Trauma

Life can be so unpredictable, you surely know it – and accidents resulting in facial trauma can happen to anyone, regardless of age or occupation. Facial injuries can be daunting, affecting not just our appearance but also our overall well-being, self-confidence, and day-to-day functionality.

Thankfully, oral and maxillofacial surgery plays an essential role in healing facial trauma and restoring our lives to normalcy. For that matter, Dr Mark Austin will discuss how oral and maxillofacial surgeons’ unique skills enable them to treat a wide range of facial injuries, helping their patients regain their appearance, functionality, and confidence.

The Unique Expertise of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are dental specialists who deal with various complex issues relating to the mouth, jaws, and facial structures. To become oral and maxillofacial surgeons, these professionals undergo extensive education and training in dental, medical, and surgical fields.

The unique understanding and expertise of the facial anatomical structures make specialists like Dr. Austin the go-to experts for treating a wide array of facial trauma, which may usually include soft tissue, bone, and dental injuries.

Treating Facial Trauma with Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are equipped to manage and treat facial trauma, expertly addressing issues like bone fractures, dental injuries, and soft-tissue damage. Here are some ways oral and maxillofacial surgeons help patients recover from facial trauma:

  • Repairing Facial Fractures – Facial fractures can occur in various bones like the jaw (mandible), cheekbone (zygoma), eye socket (orbital bones), and midface (maxilla). Oral and maxillofacial surgeons have the expertise to realign these fractured bones, stabilize them using various fixation techniques, and ensure proper healing. The ultimate goal is to restore functionality, and facial symmetry, and minimize scarring.
  • Addressing Dental Injuries – Teeth and their supporting structures can be severely damaged during facial trauma. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons can save injured teeth, extract non-savable teeth in a bone-preserving manner, and surgically insert dental implants to replace missing teeth. They can also attend to injuries to the alveolar bone (tooth socket) and jaw joints (temporomandibular joint).
  • Soft Tissue Injuries Repair – Facial lacerations, abrasions, and avulsions (skin being torn off) can significantly impact the appearance and function of essential sensory structures like the eyes, lips, and nose. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons use advanced suture techniques to minimize scarring, ensuring that both aesthetics and function are preserved as much as possible.
  • Reconstructive Surgery – In severe cases of facial trauma, reconstructive surgery might be necessary to restore form and function. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are adept at using various grafting techniques with bone, cartilage, and soft tissues to achieve such goals. They can aid in restoring a patient’s ability to bite, chew, speak, and breathe.

Emotional Recovery after Facial Trauma

For Dr Mark Austin, it’s important to acknowledge the psychological aspect of healing from facial trauma. Patients can experience a range of emotions, including shock, anger, fear, and embarrassment.

The role of oral and maxillofacial surgeons like Dr. Austin extends beyond merely repairing injuries – they are committed to guiding their patients through the emotional journey of healing by addressing concerns, boosting confidence, and offering compassionate care throughout the recovery process.