Do you experience jaw pain, difficulty speaking clearly, abnormal tooth wear, or ringing in the ears? You may not think these symptoms have anything in common, but for many patients, these are all indicators that they are suffering from TMJ dysfunction. Lucky for dental patients in Ashburn and Sterling neuromuscular dentistry services are available. Neuromuscular dentistry is more than just a treatment – it’s a complete dental care philosophy. The idea is simple enough, neuromuscular dentistry is focused on ensuring the best function for your mouth, jaw, neck, and all the oral and facial structures.
What is Neuromuscular Dentistry?
Traditional dentistry is based upon a mechanical concept of how the teeth fit together. If your present bite doesn’t hurt, it must be best for you. It is important to note that even though your bite does not hurt, it doesn’t mean that it is healthy. The absence of pain is not always an indicator of good health. Consider High Blood Pressure or Cancer which often goes undetected for the lack of symptoms in its earlier stages.
Neuromuscular dentistry concerns itself not only with how the teeth fit together, but how they are related to the head and neck muscles, and jaw joints (TMJ). The health of your mouth is related to maintaining healthy physiology of your entire body. In order for a Neuromuscular dentist to measure how the muscles and jaw position is affecting you, your dentist will utilize electrodiagnostic technology to aid in your diagnosis and treatment. Everyone considers it common for a physician to prescribe Electrocardiograms(ECG), Electroencephalogram (EEG), etc. You certainly would not expect your cardiologist to diagnose your heart condition by just feeling your pulse, would you? Similarly, “bite disease” and TMJ dysfunction can be measured more accurately using Computerized diagnostic instrumentation, such as K7 evaluation and Tekscan.
Once the bite is aligned with the jaws and muscles, damaging signs and symptoms of a bad bite most often just go away. This, in turn, relaxes the muscles, balances the bite, and allows for the Neuromuscular dentist to improve the aesthetics of your teeth and face. Most importantly, the quality of your life will be improved!
How many of these do you have?
The signs and symptoms listed below may be related to a bad bite, TMJ, and muscle problems.
- Sounds coming from your TMJ’s: Clicking, popping, grinding
- Pain from the muscles in your jaw or TMJ’S
- Grinding or clenching your teeth
- Stiff, sore neck or shoulder muscles
- Stuffy ears, with or without hearing loss
- Abnormal tooth wear at the gum line, often being attributed to brushing your teeth too hard.
What treatments are used in Neuromuscular Dentistry?
- TMJ Orthotics – in the same way people wear orthotics in their shoes to balance their leg length, hips, or just make their feet feel better. TMJ orthotics balance the jaw and TMJ position so that the patient can feel better.
- Full Mouth Restoration – restoring the teeth to the position of the jaws, established by the orthotic.
- Orthodontics – once the jaws are in the most relaxed position, established by the orthotic. The teeth are moved into that position using braces.
Meet Dr. Bryce!
Dr. Bryce is a Neuromuscular dentist, who has trained other dentists worldwide as a Clinical Instructor at the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies (LVI). He is a Fellow and Charter Member of the International Association of Physiologic Aesthetics. He is one of the few dentists worldwide to have achieved Mastership (LVIM) from the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies. Dr. Bryce and his caring dentistry team offer TMJ therapy and neuromuscular dentistry in Ashburn and Sterling. If you’re experiencing pain or want to learn more about neuromuscular dentistry, call our friendly dental team to schedule a consultation today.