The relationship between dentistry and medicine has been acknowledged throughout the history of humanity. This relationship was documented in ancient medicine accounts, and has survived until the present day, accompanied by the evolution of molecular technologies. Although we have had very important researchers' contributions in this interdisciplinary area, mainly after the 18th century, the knowledge on oral infections is still ignored by or unknown to the majority of clinical dentists and physicians. These circumstances could be changed through a broader divulgation of this complex relationship, both in the dentistry and in the medicine areas, which in turn would have a significant impact in systemic health worldwide. This movement has already started, as was observed in a World Health Assembly resolution which called for oral health to be integrated into chronic disease prevention programs in 2007. This was a significant indicator of changing perceptions of oral health over the past several decades. This brief review reports the evolution through time of the knowledge on the association between dental infections and systemic diseases, as well as the paths which we could take to consolidate this historical trend.
It also needs to be acknowledged, that various medical conditons and disorders including; sleep , headache, mood, GI, neurological and head and neck musculo disorders can be associated with oro-facial pains, temporomandibular disorders, oro-sleep related breathing disorders and toothaches.
When seeking the treatment for such conditions a through medical history, to include a review of systoms (ROS), is most likely needed by the treating provider. As such, there are dentists who are medicallly well trained is the assessment of such conditions and disorders. If there is uncertainity in what may be the cause of you orofacial pain, TMD, stomatognathis break down and or tooth ache ask your general dentist for a referral to a provider who is well trained in dental medicine. There are numerous such dentists found around the country and world.