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      Orofacial Pain: The New Specialty

      On March 31, 2020, the National Commission on Recognition of Dental Specialties and Certifying Boards (US) recognized orofacial pain (OFP) as the 12th specialty in Dentistry. Recognition of this specialty solidifies another link between dentistry and medicine, acknowledging that the orofacial region, oral cavity, and masticatory system are an integral part of total patient care.

      Picture these scenarios:

      Understanding Orofacial Pain

      Orofacial pain, affecting millions globally, casts a long shadow over smiles. This diverse spectrum of discomforts encompasses the face, mouth, and jaws, significantly impacting daily life and well-being. From the sharp twinge of a toothache to the dull ache of TMJ disorders, understanding the intricate web of causes and navigating treatment options is crucial for regaining control and living a fulfilling life.

      Unveiling the Culprits: A Closer Look

      While dental culprits like tooth decay, gum disease, and abscesses remain top suspects, numerous other factors can trigger orofacial pain:

      Beyond the Obvious: When Orofacial Pain Masks Serious Illness

      While the aforementioned causes are frequently encountered, orofacial pain can sometimes be a red flag for more serious systemic diseases. Recognizing these potential mimics is crucial for timely diagnosis and specialized treatment:

      Charting the Course to Relief: Exploring Treatment Options

      Fortunately, a diverse armamentarium of treatments exists, depending on the underlying cause:

      Beyond Medicine: Embracing Self-Care Strategies

      While treatments play a crucial role, managing orofacial pain extends beyond medications and procedures. Incorporating these self-care strategies can empower you to take control and improve your well-being:

      If you or anyone you know is suffering from chronic facial pain, do not consider yourself helpless. Through a comprehensive examination and analysis, I can help piece together the puzzle of your pain. I can then recommend appropriate treatment options or refer you to a specialist like, a neurologist in some cases, if needed. Time is of the essence, so do not delay any further. Get in touch with me for a limited time free consultation.

      Author

      Dr. Arun Kalarikal is a highly experienced Cosmetic Dentist and DHA-licensed Implantologist with over 17 years of private practice experience. He holds a Fellowship in Orofacial Pain, TMD and Dental Sleep Medicine from Roseman University in the US and is currently pursuing his Master’s Degree in the same field. He is a leading Orofacial Pain Specialist skilled in diagnosing and treating face and jaw pain conditions through tailored and precise interventions.