Also known in some countries as stomatology or oral medicine, it is the specialty that is responsible for the diagnosis and treatment of injuries and diseases that occur in the mouth, maxillary bones and temporomandibular joint (TMJ). It also includes the management of dry mouth and disorders of the saliva-producing glands, and symptoms of oral pain.
Many diseases can initially manifest in the mouth; a thorough examination of the oral cavity allows an early detection and a correct approach of the same.
The most frequent reasons for consultation in Oral Medicine are:
Comprehensive oral evaluation for early detection of lesions
Red and / or white spots or patches
Lumps, growths or increases in volume
Gray, black, or dark brown pigmentations or spots
Ulcers, canker sores, or blisters
Mucocutaneous disorders (eg Erythema multiforme, Lichen Planus, Pemphigus)
Oral infections due to fungi, viruses, bacteria or parasites (eg Candidiasis, herpes)
Oral manifestations of autoimmune conditions (eg celiac disease, Crohn's, Behcet's, Pemphigoid, Sjögren's syndrome)
Injuries and diseases in the bones, upper jaw and mandible (eg cysts, tumors, bone conditions)
Dry mouth sensation (xerostomia) and other salivary gland disorders
Halitosis and taste disturbances
Oral complications from medical conditions and their treatment (eg chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, organ transplantation)
Burning mouth syndrome, temporomandibular disorders (noise, pain when opening and closing the mouth, others) and other painful symptoms of the mouth
Oral lesion biopsy
Sialometry to establish saliva production
Minor salivary gland biopsy
Therapeutic intralesional injections
Low intensity laser therapy for oral pain processes associated with radiotherapy and chemotherapy, canker sores, temporomandibular disorders and others.
Placement of oral devices for the management of temporomandibular joint disorders and sleep apnea
Dr. Elisa Contreras, specialist in Oral Medicine tells us a little about what this specialty does.