If you have suffered dental injury as a result of another person’s negligent act, there are some things you should know. Dental injuries come with varying degrees of severity. The treatment also varies significantly depending on the type of damage. Some chips and cracks to the outer layer do not need immediate treatment. However, if the damage is such that it permeates the inner layer of the tooth and/or the roots or multiple teeth have shifted, the treatment will likely be quite extensive and may take years to complete. The bills have a way of adding up and you may be left wondering who is responsible for paying off the medical debt. While many dental injuries call for a trip to the dentist’s office to fix, the more complicated cases may require an orthodontist. In many cases, the two doctors will work together to provide the best-individualized treatment plan. The following information will explore some common issues surrounding dental injuries.
Common dental injury after a traumatic event
- Chipped, cracked, or broken teeth can vary in severity. The teeth have three layers- enamel, dentin, and pulp in the center. The more severe the injury, the more extensive and costly the treatment might be. This type of injury is usually treated by a dentist.
- Luxated teeth refer to teeth that have become loose in the socket. The tooth or teeth will need to be stabilized in order to heal. In the case of multiple luxated teeth, orthodontic intervention may be in order. The orthodontist may decide to stabilize the teeth with a splint. In some cases, a root canal is also necessary.
- Avulsed teeth refer to teeth that have been completely knocked out of the socket. If the individual handles the tooth carefully and gets to a medical professional within a few hours, the tooth may be saved. Once it has been returned to the socket in the correct orientation, a splint and/or root canal may be necessary.
- Jaw damage often occurs when the jaw comes in contact with a hard object and/or during whiplash. As a result of such trauma, the jaw may become misaligned. If it is not fixed, usually by an orthodontist, misalignment can cause long-term issues such as irregular wear of the teeth and TMJ syndrome.
Orthodontist’s part in the claim
One of the most important steps that you can take for your health and your claim is to seek medical attention immediately. You should be upfront with the medical professionals regarding the circumstances around your injury so they can provide you with necessary documents as you go through treatment. X-rays and any other diagnostic tools the doctor uses to diagnose the extent of damage will be important to include in your claim. You will also want to document the orthodontist’s plan for treatment and associated costs.
What a personal injury attorney can do for your claim
It can be complicated and time-consuming to pursue a personal injury claim. You are not only responsible for proving negligence but you are up against insurance companies with multiple, experienced attorneys. You are much more likely to receive appropriate compensation if you have your own personal injury lawyer like one from John K. Zaid & Associates guiding you along the way.