Age Determination

 

Dental maturity, often expressed as dental age, is an indicator of the
biological maturity of growing children. A method for the assessment of dental
maturity was first described by Demirjian, and is widely used and accepted,
mainly because of its ability to compare different ethnic groups. This is
possible, as the maturity scoring system proposed by the method is universal in
application, although the conversion to dental age depends on the population
considered.

The age determination of skeletal remains has been carried out using
anthropological examination of the remaining bones and dentition. The aging of
the dentition is based on attrition which, if physiological will correlate with
age. Occasionally the only material available is a single tooth or a few teeth,
or in the case of a living person, teeth in situ. In certain cases microscopic
examination of the teeth may not be possible and the age estimation is then
often determined by the degree of attrition associated with the tooth. In more
recent times the causes of attrition have involved other factors such as
bruxism, diet, environment and medication. The weaknesses and limitations of age
estimation by examination of dental attrition as the sole indicator of age are
highlighted.

 

 

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