/ 9 - Neuromuscular Dentistry

 

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Headaches, sinus problems, and even dizziness can all be symptoms of a bite that is out of alignment—a condition that makes the muscles in the head and neck work extra hard to compensate.

As a Clinical Instructor at LVI, the premier post-graduate institute for the study of neuromuscular dentistry, I am proud to be at the forefront of a groundbreaking approach to treating bite-related pain.

What is TMJ?
Temporomandibular joint disorder (also known as TMJ) is a chronic, degenerative disease that may take years to develop. This condition puts excessive pressure on the joints and surrounding tissues, twisting the jaw into an unnatural, tensed position. Often, a popping or clicking sound can actually be heard when a TMJ sufferer chews. Muscles in the face, back, neck and shoulders may also be affected, leading to symptoms that range from headaches to numbness in the hands.

Symptoms
You may be a candidate for neuromuscular dentistry if you experience any of the following symptoms on a regular basis:

Headaches or migraines
Pain or soreness around the jaw joints
Neck, shoulder, facial or back pain
Numbness in your fingers and arms
Congestion or stuffiness of the ears
Worn, chipped or cracked teeth and restorations
Clicking or grating sounds in the jaw joints

Diagnostic Technology
TMJ can be easily and painlessly determined using a state-of-the-art electrical muscle stimulator or TENSing unit and a sophisticated piece of equipment called the Myotronics K7. Your facial muscles will be exercised, built-up toxins will be released and your jaw’s optimum relaxed position will be determined.

Neuromuscular Treatment
There are many ways to correct an out of balance bite. I may create a removable orthotic to gently reposition your teeth. I can also precisely alter the shape of your teeth using a procedure called coronoplasty. Or, I might create dental restorations to raise or lower areas of your jaw into a more natural position. In most cases, I can reposition your bite without surgery or braces.

Results
Following treatment to correct TMJ, most patients experience a significant lessening to a complete cessation of symptoms. Imagine living headache free after enduring the pain for years! And as an added bonus, most patients also report positive aesthetic results—some are even asked if they’ve had a facelift.

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