Neuromuscular Dentistry (neuro=nerves and muscular=muscles) is a science of dentistry that deals with the nerves and muscles that are responsible for the movement of the lower jaw and the joints. It evaluates the complex relationship between teeth, temporomandibular joints(TMJ), muscles and nerves to find out the best resting position of the jaw. Further, it also makes sure to correct any misalignment issues between the jaw, muscles, joints, and nerves.
Occlusion (bite) can be the primary cause of pain in the area of head and neck associated with Temporomandibular Disorder(TMD). A dentist trained in Neuromuscular dentistry evaluates and corrects the whole system that makes a bite including joints, muscles, nerves and teeth.
Aim of NeuroMuscular Dentistry
NeuroMuscular Dentistry aims to give relief to the patients suffering from pains and symptoms of TMD caused by the misalignment teeth, temporomandibular joints (TMJ), muscles and nerves. Many physicians don’t realise that the painful symptoms are due to occlusion and patients keep on suffering from the pain and discomfort until the time they visit an NMD clinic.
NM dentistry corrects the bite by following treatment method:
Relieve muscle spasm and pain by ULF-TENS(Ultra-Low Frequency Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation). The rhythmic pulsing of TENS relaxes the muscles, increases the blood flow and also removes waste. It stimulates the production of endorphins, a natural anaesthetic.
Stabilize jaw alignment with a temporary device called orthotic. Orthotic is to be worn over the teeth so that a stable bite is formed by re-shaping the orthotic without adjusting the teeth.
As soon as the symptoms are relieved and the bite is stabilized, a permanent adjustment is made with the bite. This can be done in following ways:
Coronoplasty/Equilibration is done in a slight misalignment of bite. It involves smoothing and reshaping the enamel of the teeth to correct the bite.
Removable Overlay Partials (orthotics) are fitted over the back teeth to maintain an aligned bite.
Bite can be realigned by reconstruction of the teeth higher using crowns to give permanent structural support for the jaw.
Orthodontics (Braces) can move the healthy teeth to the optimal position.
All these procedures are detailed in the NMD course.Authored By : Dr. Rajesh Raveendranathan