Diagnosis & Treatment

The neuromuscular dentist will consider all of the information gathered by taking your history and doing a physical examination of your teeth, head and neck. When indicated, he may conduct a series of tests using non-invasive electronic instruments. Data from these tests will indicate to your dentist whether your bite is a major contributing factor to your problem and will help rule in or rule out your bite as the cause of, or major component of, your condition. 

Poor occlusion (bite) might result too from an injury to the head and neck or chin, or from a whiplash car accident, or from an intubation for a general anesthesia, or from any dental treatment like orthodontic, fillings, crowns and bridges and even a prophylactic (dental hygienist). Arthritis of the joint or any remodeling of it will cause a poor bite and a poor bite will cause a remodeling of your joints which might become painful. 

Proprioception can be overcome and a relaxed state of the musculature can be achieved in a reasonable period of time through ultra-low frequency TENS stimulation. From this relaxed state a new occlusion (neuromuscular occlusion) is established and can be used in various dental treatments and procedures. 

An orthosis is a custom made appliance fabricated of plastic that can be worn over or fixed to the teeth to maintain the neuromuscularly derived bite position. At this point, nothing is done to permanently alter your teeth or your bite. You typically wear this plastic appliance for a prescribed period of time to verify that this new jaw position solves or reduces the problem. If it does, it has proven that the imperfect bite was the cause of the problem and you may elect to go on and have your natural teeth treated to permanently maintain that new bite position.

© 2014 - Dr. Yves Delessert, DDS - DMD - MS, Your jaw pain and TMJ expert.
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