Bite Therapy

The relationship between how your teeth fit together and the position of your lower jaw in its socket is called occlusion. You know it as your bite. When the lower jaw is centered in its most stable position, the muscles relax and the teeth come together properly. This biologic position protects the joints, muscles and teeth during chewing.

When Your Bite Doesn’t Feel Right

When your jaw sits anywhere but in the centered position it will start to feel a bit strange. The muscle will work to put your jaw in a spot where it feels natural and as a result will work very hard. All this hard work adds up, and after a little while it will manifest as TMJ fatigue. TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint and is the point that your jaw swivels on. When the jaw is fatigued it will often feel like there is no “right” spot for it. The sensation of constantly searching for a comfortable place for your jaw to sit can be maddening.

A number of factors can contribute to the problem of the bite being off balance. Often bruxism (teeth grinding) can be a cause of this. Sometimes when a tooth chips or cracks the bite won’t fit together properly.

Bruxism

When bruxism is the cause it’s usually done when you don’t even know it, at night. Nighttime tooth grinding is usually always done without your knowledge. That is to say, you usually only notice that you are grinding your teeth when the symptoms of it start to appear. The symptoms usually include:

  • Chipped teeth
  • Cracked teeth
  • TMJ fatigue
  • TMJ pain
  • A bite that doesn’t feel right

 

Night Guard

When they do not coincide, the balance between the teeth, muscle and joint is upset and damage in the form of worn, broken, or drifting teeth can occur. The jaw can become painful with clicking and popping of the joint as signs of possible disk damage. The wide range of symptoms that can arise from this imbalance is known collectively as Temporomandibular Joint Disorder or TMD.

We evaluate your bite at your initial examination, looking for any destabilization in your occlusion. Your dental treatment involves making sure your bite is balanced and stable. When the bite is in proper alignment the teeth are secure, the jaw joints stay healthy, and you can keep your teeth for a lifetime.

Having a night guard made is a simple process that we can do in our office. We will take an impression of your teeth which will only take a couple minutes to complete. We will send the impression to our dental laboratory to be crafted. The creation of a night guard can take a few weeks. Once it is ready you will come back to our office to pick it up and ensure that it fits your mouth properly.

Please call us today at (443)808-1958 to schedule an appointment. Remember, if your gums bleed easily or often for more than a week schedule an appointment to come and see us right away. This can be the sign of a more serious issue.