Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Utilizing New Methods To Reach Patients for Wisdom Teeth Management

According to the March/April 2019 and May/June 2019 editions of AAOMS Today, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) is utilizing new methods to reach patients for wisdom teeth management. AAOMS is utilizing methods taking advantage of public service announcements (PSA) at airports, on radio, and on television (TV). AAOMS is also utilizing new infographics on websites and social media. According to page 22 in the March/April 2019 issue of AAOMS Today, in mid 2018 AAOMS launched airport PSAs with signage saying “Pain or no pain, your wisdom teeth should be checked every year.” In addition a picture of either a young woman or young man is featured along with the AAOMS logo, the tagline of AAOMS stating “Oral and maxillofacial surgeons: The experts in face, mouth and jaw surgery”, and also telling patients to find a surgeon … Read more

Indications for Removal of Wisdom Teeth

These days in 2019 the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) has a page on their website titled “Third Molar Research News” that contains information on how to manage wisdom teeth, see https://www.aaoms.org/media/third-molar-research-news. How to manage wisdom teeth continues to be contested when wisdom teeth are healthy and not causing symptoms, see for example http://www.teethremoval.com/controversy.html. One of the documents AAOMS provides is titled “The Management of Impacted Third Molar Teeth” and contains a long list of what they consider as medically necessary and valid reasons for surgical removal of wisdom teeth, see https://www.aaoms.org/docs/practice_resources/clinical_resources/impacted_third_molars.pdf. However at least two of these reasons seem to be unsupported by current scientific evidence and thinking. The first reason in doubt given by AAOMS as a valid reason which seems to lack evidence is insufficient space to accommodate erupting tooth or teeth. This reason … Read more

Important Studies on Opioid Prescribing: Implications for Dentistry

Recently on this site several articles have appeared discussing opioid prescribing after wisdom teeth removal see for example the posts Do Oral Surgeons Give Too Many Opioids for Wisdom Teeth Removal? and Opioid Prescriptions From Dental Clinicians for Young Adults and Subsequent Opioid Use and Abuse. Very recently several interesting studies regarding opioid prescribing have published. The first study is titled “Trends in Opioid Prescribing for Adolescents and Young Adults in Ambulatory Care Settings” written by Hudgins et al. appearing in Pediatrics in June 2019 (vol.143, no. 6, e20181578). The article explored opioid prescribing for adolescents (ages 13 to 17) and young adults (ages 18 to 22) receiving care in emergency departments and outpatient clinics. Data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS) and National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS) over the time period from January 1, 2005, … Read more

Do Oral Surgeons Give Too Many Opioids for Wisdom Teeth Removal?

An interesting article titled “Do Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons Over-Prescribe Opioids After Extraction of Asymptomatic Third Molars?” written by Resnick et al. appears in the 2019 edition of the Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. The authors perform a study using patients at Boston Children’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts to determine how many opioids (taken as oxycodone) they take after having wisdom teeth extracted. This study was motivated by some recent studies that has shown that patients given opioids for dealing with pain after wisdom teeth surgery can go on to abuse opioids, see for example the posts Opioid Prescriptions From Dental Clinicians for Young Adults and Subsequent Opioid Use and Abuse and Persistent Opioid Use After Wisdom Teeth Removal. In the article the authors devised a study to determine how many narcotic and non-narcotic pain relief pills are taken … Read more

Using Panoramic X-Rays of Lower Wisdom Teeth to Legally Prove if Someone is Older than 18 Years and 21 Years

According to two 2010 studies it is possible to use a panoramic x-ray of lower wisdom teeth to prove if someone is older than 18 years old and also to prove if someone is older than 21 years old. Recently on this site the issue of forensic age estimation using wisdom teeth was explored. In this article it was shown from several studies by Olze et al. that age estimation based on panoramic x-rays of wisdom teeth exploring tooth emergence must take into account populations representative of whom the person belongs in order to be more reliable. It was also discussed how Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the U.S. is using dental x-rays to attempt to determine the age of the migrant. More information on this can be found in the article titled “Here’s how ICE sent children seeking asylum … Read more