An important cause of Orofacial and Neck infections is from a dental (odontogenic) source, commonly as a result of dental caries/decay.
Orofacial and neck infections can be life threatening due to the infective swelling causing airway compromise or systemic spread of the infection (spread of the infection into the bloodstream and rest of the body). Therefore early diagnosis and treatment of these types of infections is crucial and should be undertaken by specialist Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons with the specific knowledge and experience to effectively manage such conditions.
The essential elements of treatment for orofacial and neck infections include surgical drainage of any infected collections and the use of antibiotics. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are well equipped to treat orofacial and neck infections as they have a thorough understanding of the various potential spaces in the orofacial and neck regions and are therefore able to ensure appropriate surgical drainage when required. Furthermore, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are the only surgical specialists that are also able to remove the source of infection in the form of surgical removal of decayed teeth in odontogenic causes of orofacial and neck infections.