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The Role of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in Forensic Dentistry

Posted on 4/1/2024 by Weo Admin
Dentist evaluating digital xraysOral surgeons offer specialized skills that help forensic teams analyze certain evidence. Their in-depth knowledge of teeth, jaws, and face anatomy can provide clues to help identify unknown victims or understand the details of a crime. Here are some of the key ways they contribute their expertise.

Confirming Who a Victim Was

Even when DNA is not available, the condition of the teeth and jaws of a person can offer clues about their identity. Details like old fillings, missing teeth, or bone structure help narrow down who a victim likely was based on traits. Oral surgeons recognize subtle markers others might miss to aid identification.

Figuring Out How Facial Injuries Occurred

By looking at the types and locations of facial and mouth-area wounds, oral surgeons can get insight into how they were caused. They can often tell whether the damage was from a blunt object or a sharp weapon based on certain patterns. These details help forensic teams recreate crime events for investigations.

Linking Bite Marks to Suspects

Bite marks left on a victim may be compared to specific tooth impressions of a suspect. Oral surgeons assess the size, shape, and locations of bites versus dental features. They provide expert input on the chances that the teeth of the suspect made the wound.

Rebuilding Facial Images From Remains

Facial reconstruction can restore the likeness of the individual if skeletal remains make identity uncertain. To guide forensic artists, oral surgeons use specialized anatomical knowledge of facial bones and relationships to underlying tissues. This supports correctly naming unrecognized victims.

Upholding Ethical Codes

As surgical healthcare experts, oral surgeons follow strict ethical rules focused on truth and morality. By contributing evidence responsibly and avoiding speculation in legal cases, they strengthen integrity and justice in the system.
Oral surgeons possess specialized skills that are instrumental in successfully solving complex forensic cases. Their expertise and knowledge contribute to the attainment of righteous and ethical outcomes. While our oral surgeons do not work in forensic dentistry, we are proud of our colleagues who contribute to this important cause.

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Young Jun DDS MD FACS, 601 E. Yorba Linda Blvd. #9, Placentia, CA 92870 • (657) 216-1617 • • 5/22/2024 • Page Phrases: dental implants Placentia CA •