Your Jaw & Bite
A complete, healthy smile consists of more than just beautiful teeth. A smile is formed when the muscles, bones, teeth, and nerves are all working together. With a close relationship between the teeth, jaw joints, head and neck muscles, a problem in any one of these areas may affect others, signifying the need to realign the jaw or fix a bad bite.
Neuromuscular dentistry, also known as physiologic dentistry, requires completion of advanced training on how to align the bite and help create harmony between the muscles, nerves, and teeth.
Dr. Whaley has received her neuromuscular dentistry training through the prestigious Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies. She is one of the very few dentists in the Triad to seek out and obtain neuromuscular and TMJ dental training and has helped reduce an excessive amount of discomfort for our patients.
When you schedule your consultation with Dr. Whaley, she’ll walk you through the process and carefully examine your case to diagnose if you have a TMJ disk replacement or a muscular imbalance that could benefit from appliance therapy repositioning your jaw or bite is the right treatment.
TMJ & Neuromuscular Dentistry
Some common signs and symptoms that you may need TMJ & neuromuscular care include:
- Worn dentition (shortened teeth)
- Clenching or grinding
- Chewing difficulties
- Neck, back & shoulder pain
- Ringing or stuffiness of the ears
- Pain or soreness around the jaw joints
- Pain in teeth that seems to move around
- Limited movement or locking jaw
- Clicking and popping sounds in the jaw joint
At Triad Cosmetic Dentistry, Dr. Whaley guarantees a safe and effective treatment plan by using the best technology and techniques to properly diagnose your specific problem. Depending on your case, she may use a variety of tests to find the cause of your jaw pain, such as:
- Sonography: Vibrations used to identify where the joint in the jaw isn’t properly functioning when it opens and closes.
- Electromyography: Pads that measure your jaw muscle activity.
- Jaw tracking: Analyzes the lower jaw movements with a magnet that identifies abnormalities.
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS): Ultra-low frequency electrical stimulation of the muscles to relieve muscle spasms and pain.
For TMD and MPD
The symptoms above are often an indication of either temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) or myofascial pain dysfunctions (MPD). Neuromuscular dentistry works to relieve the pain caused by one of these conditions as we work to place the jaw into its optimal position.
After analyzing your bite, Dr. Whaley can treat your jaw problem with the use of a myomonitor and by creating a small removable mouthpiece called an orthotic. This is a customized, acrylic device that’s generally worn all day on the lower jaw.
The orthotic works to reposition the jaw and correct its neuromuscular position so it can reduce pain and align your bite. Sometimes, a different night time appliance may be needed to help stabilize the joint position. Depending on your diagnose, a customized plan will be developed for your individual needs.
Find the Relief You Need
At Triad Cosmetic Dentistry
We’ll work with you to reveal the reasons for your discomfort and get you on track to a healthy smile and fully-functioning jaw. We want your smile to be a reason for your confidence, not discomfort. Contact us today to learn more about how our TMJ and neuromuscular dentistry treatments can get you on your way to a pain-free, beautiful smile.