A licensed and qualified dentist must be able to show that they have years of great experience diagnosing and treating various orofacial pain issues. This is accomplished by completing an advanced orofacial pain program at a university where the course provides knowledge at a level beyond predoctoral education.
Orofacial professionals can accurately identify and manage basic, complex, and multivariate orofacial pain conditions because of their meticulous post-doctoral training. Without the information and comprehension gained via training, doctors in the medical and dentistry fields may incorrectly identify the issue, resulting in ineffective therapies. Sometimes ineffective treatment can result in the false assumption that the patient’s suffering is brought on by psychological issues.
The major obligation for coordinating care with a patient’s other healthcare providers falls on orofacial pain experts. Physical medicine, pharmacotherapeutic therapies, such as systemic, topical, and therapeutic injections, oral appliance therapy, non-surgical management of orofacial trauma, and behavioural therapies appropriate for treating patients with orofacial pain are all areas they must be knowledgeable about. Let’s move ahead and learn how a specialist can diagnose the problem and what it entails.
It can be challenging to diagnose unusual facial pain. The signs are comparable to many other syndromes that cause such pain. Your medical professional will conduct a physical examination, go over your medical history, and assess your symptoms. To rule out any other conditions that might be causing your facial pain, your doctor may run tests. Tests may include:
- Dental examinations: A dentist thoroughly looks at your mouth, jaws, and teeth. To check for cavities, infections, impacted molars, or other dental issues, they might take dental X-rays.
- An MRI or CT scan: These scans can identify issues with your head, neck, or face. Imaging tests could be carried out by your doctor to rule out the chance of a facial fracture, malignancy, or blood vessel issue.
- Neurological exams: To examine the nerves in your face, your doctor will perform neurological tests. You could be instructed to blink and move your eyes in various directions. Your capacity to grin, frown, and move your lips is tested. Additionally, they might touch various parts of your face to feel any numbness or pain.
- Psychological tests: Your doctor may inquire about your state of mind, actions, and relationships with others. Issues like melancholy, stress, or anxiety can either cause or exacerbate pain.
Orofacial pain dentists are experts who have advanced training in treating orofacial pain issues. They deliver high-quality, evidence-based care and are an essential component of our healthcare system for both our medical and dental needs. The expense of care is primarily paid by medical insurance companies as many states have concluded that these are dental issues, not just medicinal. Based on this data, an examination is conducted by an expert in orofacial pain to determine all symptoms, diagnoses, and reasons for the pain.
The therapy strategy is created to address the ailment while educating the patient on how to lessen the condition’s patient-centred causes. Additionally, this will avoid the effects of chronic pain, including dependence on pharmaceuticals for lengthy periods of time, functional limitations, loss of employment, disability, and addiction to opioids and other drugs.
The majority of TMJ and orofacial pain sufferers experience a variety of symptoms, including jaw pain, headaches, facial pain, neck pain, tooth pain, and popping, locking, or clicking in the temporomandibular jaw joints. Multiple overlapping orofacial pain, diseases may cause these symptoms. Thus, a specialist’s ability to effectively treat a patient rests on their ability to recognize all of the patient’s symptoms and the corresponding physical diagnosis. The majority of patients have three or more illnesses that are producing discomfort. Failure of treatment may result from a missed diagnosis. This calls for a thorough assessment of the jaw, mouth, head, and neck and the majority of the time, imaging comprising a CT scan of the head, neck, jaws, and joints is required.
It is also essential to identify and change all underlying patient-centred causes for orofacial pain conditions. If not, this will result in the development of pain cycles that will perpetuate and lead to chronic pain and its reasons. Although a traumatic injury such as a blow, accident, or fall may lead to the onset of pain, factors that are under the control of the patient such as repetitive strain, teeth clenching, tense posture, work, home, or relationship stress, poor sleeping, diet, and sustained negative emotions can lead to increased pain. Orofacial pain specialists work with a team including health psychologists, physical therapists, and telehealth coaches to ensure that patients help and learn how to reduce the causes of pain cycles.
A licensed orofacial dentist who specialises in the diagnosis, management, and treatment of conditions causing pain in the mouth, jaw, head, neck, and face is known as an orofacial pain specialist. Despite the fact that these illnesses might produce tooth discomfort, the teeth are not the disorder’s primary cause. Orofacial discomfort may be brought on by problems with the muscles, nerves, ligaments, or bones of the face or its surroundings.
To treat these problems, orofacial pain specialists frequently collaborate with other medical professionals as a member of an interdisciplinary team. Treatment options include giving prescription medications, performing surgery, giving exercise advice, using mouth appliances (such as a mouth guard or splint), or administering injections of steroid drugs or Botox.
Orofacial pain experts must complete extra education and may choose to pass a licensing exam to become certified. The department at RRDCH under the tutelage of Dr. Prafulla Thumati is specially created to impart knowledge to students for the investigations and treatment given for all types of Orofacial and Temporomandibular Pain dysfunction including Migraine. If you are an aspirant looking to pursue the course, check the website and get admission today.