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College Dentistry Department Restorative DepartmentSemester Essay

Paper type: Essay Pages: 5 (1126 words)

Views: 286

College: Dentistry Department: Restorative Department

Semester: Fall Academic Year: 2019/2020

Course Title:

Course ID:

Section Number:

Dental anatomy and occlusion



Number of Enrolled Students:


Name: Assessment


Assessment Date:

156 Dr. Ayyam Khalid

Assignment (forensic dentistry) 10/11/2019 (Submission Deadline)

Student Name:

Saja Ramadan


ID: 201810484

Section: 4F

S. No.


Course Learning Outcome (CLO)

Maximum Mark

Scored Mark







Forensic dentistry and human identification

Forensic dentistry or odontology is a major branch of dentistry that deals with remains of teeth of passed away people.

A forensic dentist uses his knowledge in dentistry as well as civil laws enforced by police agencies in a criminal justice system, to invistegate a case. A forensic dentists can determine age, occupation, race, and previous dental history and socioeconomic status of a person.

Human dentition is as individual as fingerprints, even when facial features or fingerprints are lost, a person may be identified from their individual tooth morphology as well as restorations. A lot of methods are used to aid identification such as taking x-ray or radiograph and working in a morgue to expose the jaws surgically.

Also, antemortem records (if available) are compared with postmortem records. Pathological conditions or changes brought by age like lost teeth, broken or gold crowns can be recognized. Developmental disturbances in the mouth makes unique to the individual. Furthermore, the tooth pulp can be extracted and DNA sample could be taken for analysis.

Civil ligation

A patient may claim that improper dental care was provided by the dentist which lead to poor treatment consequences or by a third party. Investigation is done in situations like these, by experts, including forensic dentists. Dentists are responsible to detect and report abuse or neglect of oral health by patients to law enforcement agency.

Bite Marks.

The dentist should also look for bite marks on the victim. bite marks can be found anywhere on a body, particularly on soft, fleshy tissue. they are considered as pattern injuries. Usally they leave telltale marks and are a clear proof of assault or homicide so the analysis can give a clear identification of the criminal or abuser. The forensic dentist must have knowledge and understanding of tooth morphology, dental arch characteristics, occlusion, and the physiology of jaw function. The bite mark is compared to

that of the suspect, dental casts and photographs are also made. So teeth that are malpositioned, malocclused, fractured, or restored leave a different mark on the victim than teeth that are in ideal alignment. It also includes anomalies such as missing, extruded, hypoerupted, ankylosed, rotated (torsiversion), tilted, or chipped teeth. This deviation from normal benefits the forensic dentist in analysis

and identification. infrared photography can be used to identify subcutaneous evidence of damage from a bite that is deep or not clearly visible on the skin. Ultraviolet photography can also serve to expose a bite mark in an area covered by tattoos or any other damage. Other than that DNA analysis could be done.

Mass disaster and human identification

Mass disaster is caused by natural events. Flooding, earthquake or volcanic eruption for instance. It may also be caused by human activities such as mishaps involving mass transport by land, sea or air. War, boundary disputes, ethnic or religious conflicts, explosions are also causes. In some severe situations, like the persons facial features and fingerprint are lost due to complete destruction of soft tissues such as the skin. Hence, recognition by hard tissues like the humans dentition or jaw bones is rather helpful and is used very often. Dental identification is one of the most reliable methods in cases like these and it plays a key role in natural and manmade disaster especially in mass casualties due to aviation and explosion or fire disasters.

Here too, antemortem records are compared with postmortem features which often give a positive identification of the deceased. However, the dentist and dental team must be well trained to be able to reach to a conclusion, thus, a few steps are followed.

A. Preparation and training.

Planning is very important for successful identification of victims of mass disasters and a special identification team should be responsible and trained for the work. National and international programs and courses are offered throughout the year in which forensic doctors are trained as individuals and as a team to work in such situations.

B. Initialresponse

In the coincidence of mass disaster, identification must start at the scene of the accident, local law enforcement agencies and emergency medical teams respond first. The former ensures security of the site, while the emergency team works to rescue any injured individual. However, a dentist should also be present for search and recovery and to identify remains or dental components that might not be recognizable by other people. All body parts of the deceased are first flagged, photographed and then transported. Special care should be taken during transport to prevent loss of any evidence. Sometimes lacquer like polyurethane should be sprayed to stabilize or prevent damage during transport.

C. Morgue and forensic dental identification operations

Morgue operation consists of antemortem examination, postmortem examination and a comparison of each. A team works to do them

and two dentists handle each examination.

Programs such as WinID program developed

by Dr. James McGivney are used which utilize specific codes of antemortem and postmortem records and compares them. Physical copies are made for verification.

D. Forensic anthropology

Forensic anthropology is a way in which age or race could be determined. Age can be known well during primary or mixed dentition but as third molars erupt and the teeth are fully developed it gets less reliable because the range gets larger. Additionally, pulp changes like pulp stones and wear patterns are not reliable. Other aspects can be used to determine race, for example, shovel shaped incisors might refer to a person of Asian or Mongolian background. Cusp of Carabelli most often an indicates

Caucasian ancestry. Although almost every race has specific noticeable characteristics, the number of mixed racial and ethnic increased nowadays, so that as well must be taken into


E. Massdisastercasestudies

? 30 august 1974- In the Hellas Express Number 410 railway accident, the victims were identified by dental data of fixed and removable prosthetic appliances and age was determined in child victims.

? 1995- A Malaysian plane crashed in which 34 passengers wre killed. cranio-facial morphology, DNA profiling, dental age estimation and dental data were used to identify the victims.

? 1996- Two bus accidents occurred in Bailen andwhich dental data played a cruial role in their identification.

? 2004- Indian ocean tsunami identification was done using post-mortem records, dental data and DNA profiling.

Importance of forensic dentistry for practicing dentists

To conclude, forensic dentistry is a very major branch that solves many cases of abuse and death. Dental professionals must keep records and radiographs of all patients, for legal and forensic purposes, if needed. In addition, dentists should have enough knowledge of forensic odontology


Dental Anatomy Its Relevance to Dentistry ( by Julian B. Woelfel and Rickne C.Scheid) Wheeler’s Dental Anatomy, Physiology and Occlusion. (by STANLEY J. NELSON) www.omicsonline.org

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College Dentistry Department Restorative DepartmentSemester. (2019, Nov 29). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/college-dentistry-department-restorative-departmentsemester-857-best-essay

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