Medicine and dentistry are continuously evolving, due
largely to the influences and interactions of new methods,
technologies, and materials. Partly because of outdated testing
requirements, our students can no longer adequately
meet the increasing demands these changes have placed on
a patient-oriented education.
The first task of any aspiring professional is to become acquainted with the
terminology of the chosen subject. When the need arises to understand and
discuss problems in another professional field, it is, inevitably, the new
terminology that forms the largest barrier to communication and which may
lead to misunderstanding.
Claims of negligence against the professions have been increasing over the
last few years. Lawyers increasingly have to deal with the subject of dental
surgery in its widest sense.
Since the last issue on temporomandibular (TMD) disorders and orofacial
pain presented in the Dental Clinics of North America (April 1997), there
has been an explosion of scientific, technologic, and procedural advances in
this complex field. The amalgamation of the science with the art of dentistry
has resulted from an enhanced appreciation for and the ability to provide
evidence-based diagnosis and care.
Pain and compromised function are the most common reasons for which
people seek health care.