Pathology involves the study and diagnosis of diseases. Oral pathology implies the diagnosis of diseases of the mouth and jaw. Since the mouth is an important organ which performs numerous different functions, the health of the mouth is extremely crucial. Also, the mouth is prone to diverse medical and dental disorders and diseases.
So, oral pathology deals with the identification and diagnosis of all the diseases which can affect and influence the oral and maxillofacial regions. This branch of medical science looks into and explores the causes, processes and effects of the diseases of the oral cavity.
The following are some of the major diseases that oral pathologists identify:
Diseases of the salivary glands
The salivary glands perform the function of producing saliva and diverse enzymes. These saliva and enzymes are extremely important for the swallowing and processing of foods. Due to the diseases, salivary glands can get inflamed and sore. Furthermore, these diseases can also possibly lead towards cancer.
One of the most common diseases of salivary glands is the formation of stones in the small ducts of the salivary glands. These stones prevent the saliva flowing freely. In order to cure the problem of stones in the salivary glands, it may be necessary for surgery or medication.
Mumps is a viral contagious infection which affects the parotid glands. In this disease, a throbbing swelling occurs at the sides of the mouth. The best prevention step to take against mumps is to vaccinate children in infancy.
Halitosis is the problem of bad breath. There are many factors which can cause this. For example, smoking, consumption of alcohol, gum disease, poor care of dentures, sinusitis, chronic lung disease. Most importantly, not cleaning the mouth properly by regular brushing and flossing the teeth.
Some medications have the side-effects of causing dryness of mouth which can also lead to the problem of bad breath. Thus, maintaining the cleanliness and hygiene of the oral cavity is crucial in preventing halitosis.
These are more commonly known as canker sores. These are small ulcers which can appear inside the mouth, on the tongue and on the lips. Usually, these ulcers vanish within 10 to 14 days. These sores are quite painful and inflamed and cause an uncomfortable sensation.
This is a fungal infection which affects the mucous membrane of the mouth. Trauma caused by dentures and tongue piercing are among the factors which can lead to this condition. In this condition, a white patch can occur in the mouth