Dental Age Estimation of Lower Left Third Molar (38) Using Modified Willems Method in South Indian Population
Introduction: One of the most important factors that affect every aspect of life is one's age. In forensic medicine and dentistry, person recognition is crucial. A person's age, gender, ethnicity, and other characteristics are used to identify them. The chronological age of a person is determined by the registration of his or her birth date. Dental maturity is preferable to tooth emergence into the oral cavity because it is less affected by local factors. Dental maturity is more reliable and can be used as an indicator of biological maturity, because they are less influenced by nutritional and endocrine status. Wisdom tooth is the last permanent tooth to erupt in the oral cavity. Since it has more range of eruption period. It can be more reliable in assessing the sex and age of the individuals. Aim and objectives: To assess the dental age of lower left third molar (38) using willems method in south Indian population. Materials and methods: The study was conducted by collecting 100 digital orthopantomogram from randomised controlled subjects. Then the samples were categorised into 50 males and 50 females of age group. The study was held by getting ethical approval clearance. The collected data entered excel sheets along with actual age and tooth development staging. Actual Willems staging will be done from A-H, but in our study, we modified the developmental staging into I-VIII for easy validation. Data entered in excel sheets transformed into SPSS software. In SPSS software standard deviation, p value and statistical significance was done. Results and discussion: Primary dentition is more reliable for dental age determination, because most of the teeth will undergo simultaneous development, calcification and maturation. Except the third molar all other teeth will be seen in primary dentition. Third molars are unique in terms of their size, shape, timing of formation and eruption. The SD value is found to be 2.22 years in males and in females 3.98 years. Chronological age shows statistically significant value (p value-0.098), while tooth staging shows statistically insignificant value (p value-0.302). Conclusion: Our present study concludes that the modified Willems method is more accurate and reliable for dental age estimation.