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                                  Fracture Jaw Immobilization

Treatment for a fractured jaw depends on how badly the bone is broken. If you have a minor fracture, it can heal on its own. You may only need pain medicines. You will probably have to eat soft foods or stay on liquid diet for a while.

Surgery is often needed for moderate to severe fractures. The jaw may be wired to the teeth of the opposite jaw to keep the jaw stable while it heals. Jaw wires are usually left in place for 6 to 8 weeks. Small rubber bands (elastics) are used to hold the teeth together. After a few weeks, some of the elastics are removed to allow motion and reduce joint stiffness.

If the jaw is wired, you can only drink liquids or eat very soft foods. Have blunt scissors readily available to cut the elastics in the event of vomiting or choking. If the wires must be cut, call your health care provider right away so they can be replaced.

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