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Jaw Fracture in Children
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
A jaw fracture is a break in your child's jawbone. It may take weeks or months for the jawbone to heal.
WHILE YOU ARE HERE:
is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that your child may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your child's medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done to your child. Make sure all of your questions are answered.
At first your child may need to rest in bed. Your child's healthcare provider will tell you when it is safe for your child to get out of bed. A healthcare provider will help your child get up for the first time. If he or she ever feels weak or dizzy, have him or her sit or lie down right away.
Your child may not be able to eat solid food for a period of time so the jaw can rest and heal. Your child may only be allowed to drink liquids. He or she may need to use a straw to drink liquids if the upper and lower teeth are wired together.
Stay with your child for comfort and support as often as possible while he is in the hospital. Ask another family member or someone close to the family to stay with your child when you cannot be there. Bring items from home that will comfort your child, such as a favorite blanket or toy.
is a small tube placed in your child's vein that is used to give medicine or liquids.
- Pain medicine may be given to decrease pain. Do not wait until your child's pain is severe before you ask for more medicine.
- Acetaminophen decreases pain.
- NSAIDs help decrease swelling and pain.
- Antibiotics may be given to help treat or prevent a bacterial infection if the bone broke through your child's skin.
- A tetanus shot keeps your child from getting tetanus. Your child should have a tetanus shot if he or she has not had one in the past 5 to 10 years.
X-rays, a CT scan, or MRI of your child's head or jaw may show a broken bone. Your child may be given contrast liquid to help the broken bone show up better in the pictures. Tell the healthcare provider if your child has ever had an allergic reaction to contrast liquid. Do not let your child enter the MRI room with anything metal. Metal can cause serious injury. Tell the healthcare provider if your child has any metal in or on his or her body.
- Devices such as wires, elastic bands, splints, and bandages may be used to support your child's jaw and help the bone heal.
- Surgery may be needed to return the jawbone to its normal position if the fracture is severe. Pins, plates, and screws may be used to hold the jawbone together. Surgery may also be needed to correct a deformity or fix damaged tissues, such as the mouth, tongue, nerves, or blood vessels.
Your child may bleed more than expected or get an infection if he or she has surgery. If not treated soon after the injury, your child may have permanent nerve damage or paralysis.
CARE AGREEMENT:You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
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