Facial Trauma

Facial Injuries

An oral and maxillofacial specialist is thoroughly qualified to repair facial injuries. These professionals are well versed in emergency care, acute treatment, and long-term reconstruction and rehabilitation – not just for physical reasons, but for emotional ones as well. Injuries to the face, by their very nature, impart a high degree of emotional as well as physical trauma to patients. The science and art of treating these injuries requires special training involving a “hands on” experience and an understanding of how the treatment provided will influence the patient’s long-term function and appearance.

Types of Facial Trauma

Drs. Heise, Alpha and Delgadillo meet and exceed these modern standards. They are trained, skilled, and uniquely qualified to manage and treat facial trauma. They are on staff at local hospitals and deliver emergency room coverage for facial injuries, which include the following conditions:

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The Nature of Maxillofacial Trauma

There are a number of possible causes of facial trauma, such as motor vehicle accidents, accidental falls, sports injuries, interpersonal violence, and work-related injuries. Types of facial injuries can range from injuries to teeth to extremely severe injuries to the skin and bones of the face. Typically, facial injuries are classified as either soft tissue injuries (skin and gums), bone injuries (fractures), or injuries to special regions (such as the eyes, facial nerves, or the salivary glands).

Soft Tissue Injuries of the Maxillofacial Region

When soft tissue injuries, such as lacerations, occur on the face they are repaired by suturing. In addition to the obvious concern of providing a repair that yields the best cosmetic result possible, care is taken to inspect for and treat injuries to structures such as facial nerves, salivary glands, and salivary ducts (or outflow channels). Drs. Heise, Alpha and Delgadillo are well-trained oral and maxillofacial surgeons and are proficient at diagnosing and treating all types of facial lacerations.

Bone Injuries of the Maxillofacial Region

Fractures to the bones in the face are treated in a similar manner to fractures in other parts of the body. The specific form of treatment is determined by various factors, which include the location of the fracture, the severity of the fracture, and the age and general health of the patient. When an arm or leg is fractured a cast is often applied to stabilize the bone to allow for proper healing. Since a cast cannot be placed on the face, other means have been developed to stabilize facial fractures.

One of these options involves wiring the jaws together for certain fractures of the upper and/or lower jaw. Certain other types of fractures of the jaw are best treated and stabilized by the surgical placement of small plates and screws at the involved site. This technique of treatment can often allow for healing and eliminates the necessity of having the jaws wired together. This technique is called “rigid fixation” of a fracture. The relatively recent development and use of rigid fixation has profoundly improved the recovery period for many patients, allowing them to return to normal function more quickly.

The treatment of facial fractures should be accomplished in a thorough and predictable manner. More importantly, the patient’s facial appearance should be minimally affected. An attempt at accessing the facial bones through the fewest incisions necessary is always made. At the same time, the incisions that become necessary are designed to be small and, whenever possible, are placed so that the resultant scar is hidden.

Injuries to the Teeth & Surrounding Dental Structures

Isolated injuries to teeth are quite common and may require the expertise of various dental specialists. Oral surgeons usually are involved in treating fractures in the supporting bone, or in replanting teeth that have been displaced or knocked out. These types of injuries are treated by one of a number of forms of splinting (stabilizing by wiring or bonding teeth together). If a tooth is knocked out it should be placed in salt water or milk. The sooner the tooth is re-inserted into the dental socket the better chance it will survive. Therefore, the patient should see a dentist or oral surgeon as soon as possible. Never attempt to wipe the tooth off, since remnants of the ligament that hold the tooth in the jaw are attached and are vital to the success of replanting the tooth. Other dental specialists may be called upon, such as endodontists, who may be asked to perform root canal therapy, and/or restorative dentists, who may need to repair or rebuild fractured teeth. In the event that injured teeth cannot be saved or repaired, dental implants are often now utilized as replacements for missing teeth.

The proper treatment of facial injuries is now the realm of specialists who are well versed in emergency care, acute treatment, long-term reconstruction, and rehabilitation of the patient.


Patient Reviews Write a Review


Heise, Alpha & Delgadillo OMS

5 out of 5 stars based on 35 Facial Trauma reviews

Patient Review By Linda S

Dr Alpha was very kind and friendly. I was at ease right away. My appointment was at 9:30 am. I left the office 45 to 50 min later feeling great and no pain. Dr Alpha’s assistant was also very kind and helpful. I enjoyed talking with her when we were waiting for my tooth to be numb. I left feeling great with no pain. No pain at all now 4 days later. Just an empty space in my mouth. Dr Alpa called me at home Monday evening to see how I was doing. Unfortunately I missed his call. He advised me to call the office if I had any questions or problems. I highly recommend this office! Thank you.

- Linda S

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Jack L

I had to initial my acknowledgement of so many possible side-effects of the procedure, and other things that could go wrong, that I was beginning to have second thoughts. But Dr. Heise did such a good job that, less than 24 hours after having a tooth extracted, I felt as if it had never happened. He prescribed pain meds, but I never felt any pain. I'm not sure how he did it, but I'm grateful he did. I hope I don't need these services again, but if I do I'll have no reservations going to Dr. Heise.

- Jack L

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Alan G

Dr Alpha is a highly skilled professional. He makes every procedure quick and easy!

- Alan G

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Ruth N

Outstanding on service and care on day of implants.

- Ruth N

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By EREN L

Dr. Heise sets the bar for efficiency. I have had almost no pain from the procedure....which was my BIGGEST concern. Dr. Heise even phoned me after hours to follow up on my recovery, and make sure I didn't have any questions or concerns. I would definitely recommend this office to anyone in need of the services they offer. Thank you Heise & Alpha OMS!! Much appreciated.

- EREN L

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Debbie G

I have been treated by Dr. Heise twice in the past 2 years and each time I was so impressed! His skills are top notch, the results are perfection and best of all, I've had no pain with either procedure. The office is just what you would hope for: immaculate, state of the art, everyone you encounter is compassionate and professional. Dr. Heise has earned my trust. Thank you for making a scary situation comfortable and easy (for me).

- Debbie G

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Wendie P

I am so pleased with Dr. Alpha he is amazing he made me feel comfortable and his nurses were A++++ the twilight they used was just enough to put you at ease I will recommend all my family and friends to see Dr. Alpha, amazing amazing

- Wendie P

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Tyler T

Dr. Heise is very professional, knowledgeable, and caring. I went in for wisdom teeth extraction and was nervous because I had never gone under anesthesia before. However, the whole process went so smoothly. If you have to do any kind of dental procedure, come here! The staff are so nice and welcoming. He even called me the same day after my surgery to check in on me and I’ve never had any other dentist do that before. I don’t want to have anymore dental procedures done but if I had to, I wouldn’t schedule with anyone else besides Heise & Alpha. Thank you to the entire staff for making me feel so welcomed and at ease!

- Tyler T

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Frances S

Thank you so very much for such a seamless and easy wisdom teeth removal. I really appreciate the friendliness and kindness I was shown since I walked in the door. Getting my wisdom teeth extracted was always so scary to me, but this office made it as easy and comfortable as they could. I am so grateful for such a positive experience.

- Frances S

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Susan D

The very best dental experience I have ever had in my 56 years. I will recommend him to anyone in need of oral surgery. This practice has perfected their craft.

- Susan D

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Sharon G

I have never had a Dentist like Dr. Alpha. He was so caring and concerned about my excessive anxiety over this oral surgery. This was the best dental experience in my life. I would recommend everyone to this dental office. Thank u everyone who got me thru today. Thank u so much Dr. Alpha.

- Sharon G

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Jarmila C

I had a lot of anxiety about having to get my tooth pulled. Mimi made me feel so safe. She was so kind. Dr Alpha was so gentle. The Twilight they used was top shelf! I would give them 10 stars!

- Jarmila C

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Trisha B

I have never been catered to by so many in this office. I came in initially with an emergency and I was taken care of quickly. I would recommend anyone to come to this office and have the confidence that you will be well cared for.

- Trisha B

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Neil a L

Great staff,

- Neil a L

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Dave N

I have to say that my experience with this dental office was the best I have ever had. I was comfortable, treated with respect, very well taken care of by Dr. Craig and his associates! I highly recommend having your dental work done here. They are absolutely top shelf!

- Dave N

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Deborah D

The staff is friendly and ready to answer any questions that you might have. Dr. Heise is super friendly goes way and beyond to make your stay there as comfy as he can. I had a tooth extraction this morning with sedation and before you know it, I was done. I would highly recommend Dr. Heise for any oral surgery. Thank you all for your kindness, it was much appreciated.

- Deborah D

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Barbara H

Everyone and everything was done very professionally and friendly. I would recommend this staff and doctor. It was quick and easy

- Barbara H

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Brittany H

I had the best experience!! I would defiantly recommend this office to friends and family!

- Brittany H

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Jacqueline W

Great team. All done before Elton John finished his song.

- Jacqueline W

5 out of 5 stars on

Patient Review By Jennifer R

The best dentist I’ve ever had other than my regular dentist

- Jennifer R

5 out of 5 stars on