According to the latest JADA edition, (JADA 146(10) October 2015), Dr. Horst and colleagues presented some really interesting data on facial pain.
Honestly, there is not a single day in my practice that I do not see a patient with a chief complaint of oral or facial pain (= Orofacial pain). According to this study, orofacial pain affects close to a 1/4 of the US population, at a cost of $32 billion per year! Well, here are some interesting findings:
- One in 6 patients experience orofacial pain
- In this study about 16% complained of orofacial pain ( about 9% due to teeth reasons, 6.6% due to muscles and ligament in the facial region, and the rest were non-specific)
- Orofacial pain typically decreased with age, with the lowest reported in patients 65 and older
- Pain due to teeth were also shown to decrease with age, with the lowest reported in patients 65 and older
- HOWEVER – Pain the in muscles and ligaments were reported 3 times more in women!
- Patients that had teeth and were found to have wear facets on their teeth (wearing down of the teeth to a point that the cusp tips are flattened) were more likely to have pain in their muscles and ligaments of the face.