Forensic Dentistry is the study of resolving legal problems by applying dental knowledge. This science has an ever-increasingly broader scope which covers issues raised in civil, criminal and labour law. Dental knowledge and techniques are used to resolve issues in these fields or else contribute towards their solution. Most cases require knowledge of dental trauma, dental prostheses, dental surgery or the basic science on which dental knowledge is based.
Dentistry plays a key role in human identification. It is necessary as much from the human as the legal perspective. In cases of catastrophic events, the question of identification is one of the most relevant medical-legal issues. It is essential for the professionals involved in resolving such cases to know the appropriate techniques and protocols for both isolated and large-scale incidents.
Even though dental identification needs to be used simultaneously alongside other identification techniques (fingerprints or forensic genetics), it offers the advantage of being a quick, effective, scientific and economical method of great importance to identification in major disasters.
Knowing the legal regulations governing the exercise of our profession is important for good medical practice in that professional complaints against dentists are rising on a daily basis making it even more important to be aware of the regulations governing dentistry.
- To learn how to solve problems that arise in circumstances of disaster and major catastrophes as well as in isolated cases in which dentistry is necessary for solving the case.
- To gain experience of Interpol's forms from a dentistry perspective.
- To acquire adequate knowledge on the main aspects of human identification, criminology, forensic genetics, and forensic anthropology.
- To acquire knowledge of the methods to follow in cases of needing to identify living people, corpses, or human remains.
- To learn how to apply forensic techniques in cases required by the courts.
- To acquire knowledge about situations provided for in law in respect of the different forms of death, especially violent or criminally suspicious death.
- To learn the circumstances in which a post-mortem is compulsory.
- To acquire sufficient knowledge to be able to solve problems arising in relation to the administration of justice.
- To provide the necessary knowledge to be able to practice dentistry, especially the legal aspects of performing the profession.
- To appreciate the value of a clinical history as a document of interest for healthcare, scientific and medico-legal purposes.
- To know how to assess dental damage. Evaluation scales.
- To learn how to make a medico-legal assessment of malpractice in dentistry.
- To know the basic legislation as it applies to practicing the profession.
- To draw up expert reports.
Professionals related to Dentistry, Biology, Medicine and Criminology as well as members of the State security forces and bodies, Regional Police, health emergency centres, Civil Protection and emergencies staff, dental hygienists.