Dental injury is a risk of laryngoscopy – a procedure where the larynx is visualized usually with the intention of inserting an endotracheal tube. Laryngoscopes like the curved Mac blade and straight Miller blade are traditionally utilized to perform this task. In the modern era, more facilities have video laryngoscopes, but I still want my students to become proficient with all available options.
If a patient has a semi-concerning oral aperture and I’m working with a relatively green trainee, sometimes I’ll slap on some foam padding on the underside of the laryngoscope to help cushion the upper teeth during the procedure. Keep in mind, if the airway truly is concerning, I’m likely jumping straight to video laryngoscopy/fiberoptic intubation or even an awake fiberoptic intubation.