Posted July 29, 2014.
While traditional dentistry aims to keep your bite intact, neuromuscular dentistry focuses on the function of the muscles that control your jaw position, chewing, and swallowing. Specialized computerized equipment measures in detail the pattern of your jaw’s opening and closing, as well as the activity of the key muscles both in function and at rest. With this important data, your dentists at Bull Valley Dentistry can decide if your jaw position (bite) should remain in place or be moved to a more ideal position. Thankfully for patients, these tests are comfortable and non-invasive.
A Computerized Mandibular Scan (CMS) applies a tiny magnet to your lower gum, which works with sensors on headgear to gather data. Your muscle activity is monitored with Surface Electromyography (SEMG), which is much like an electrocardiogram. To study the sounds of your jaw joints, electrosonography (ESG) uses a headset with microphone-like sensors that detect vibrations when you open and close your mouth. A truly relaxed jaw allows for more accurate results, so sometimes a stimulator device called a Myomonitor is used before these tests.
Headaches are generally classified into several basic types: Sinus, Cluster, Tension and Migraine. You can determine which type you have by discussing it with our Dentists. While headaches can be typically treated by your physician, improper occlusion (your bite) may play a significant role in certain types of headaches as well as other head and neck pain.
If the indications are that your bite is a major factor, your dentist may recommend provisional or interim treatment. This involves fabrication of a custom made orthotic. An orthotic is a plastic appliance that is worn over or fixed on your teeth to adjust your bite to a correct relationship. At this point, nothing permanent is done to alter your teeth or your bite. You would wear this appliance for a period of time to make sure the new bite position is correct before any consideration would be given to permanently alter your bite.
Adjusting your jaw position and bite can help to reduce the frequency and intensity of headaches and migraines. For more information on headache/migraine therapy, we invite you to contact our McHenry, Illinois dental office today. 1-815-344-2264