Risk Factors of Cavitations

The major factors contributing to cavitations are the physical, bacterial, and toxic components of dental trauma. Cavitations are mainly caused by trauma from tooth extraction; however conventional and surgical root canal procedures are also linked to cavitations. These lesions have been diagnosed in patients aged from 18 to 84 years. Females are affected twice as frequently as males. Any area of the jaw may be affected, but the third molar (wisdom tooth) areas are most frequently involved. As seen in table below, about 45% of all cavitations are located in the third molar area.

Jawbone Location Upper Jaw Lower Jaw Total
Central Incisor Area 2.5% 0.2% 2.5%
Lateral Incisor Area 3.6% 0.2% 3.8%
Canine Area 5.0% 2.0% 7.0%
1st Premolar Area 5.2% 1.1% 6.3%
2nd Premolar Area 4.8% 3.4% 8.2%
1st Molar Area 6.8% 12.6% 19.4%
2nd Molar Area 2.6% 5.1% 7.7%
3rd Molar Area 20.0% 24.9% 44.9%
Total 51.5% 48.5% 100%

Careful extraction of a tooth by a skilled dentist along with the gentle removal of the periodontal ligament that holds the tooth to the bone can reduce the chances of developing a cavitation. It is important to follow the instructions for care given after an extraction to eliminate any post-operative complications like dry socket, which can inhibit proper healing.

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