Neuromuscular Dentistry

Neuromuscular dentistry is not for everyone, but it has been helpful for patients who present to the office with headaches, facial pain, painful jaw joints, heavily worn or chipped teeth and limited jaw movement. Neuromuscular dentistry uses instrumentation to record pre-treatment conditions, to obtain a physiologic rest position unique to the individual and to follow the progress and to determine the end point of treatment. To find out more about this type of dentistry, visit,

The treatment goals are to:

  1. Relieve muscle spasm and pain.
    The immediate concern is to provide relief of your symptoms. The best way to do this is by using a technology called ULF-TENS. ULF-TENS stands for Ultra Low Frequency Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation. ULF-TENS is a way to relax muscles. The rhythmic pulsing relaxes the muscles by increasing blood flow and pumping out waste products. ULF-TENS also helps with pain relief by stimulating the body's production of endorphins, the body's natural anesthetic.
  2. Stabilize the bite.
    Often for this step a temporary device, known as an orthotic is worn over the teeth. The orthotic allows the dentist to make easy adjustments to the plastic without adjusting the teeth until the bite is stabilized. Once symptoms are relieved and the bite has been stabilized, we can move onto and more long term method of holding your bite to the correct position.
  3. Long-term management.
    There are a variety of ways to correct your bite in a more permanent way. Four of the most common of these approaches are outlined below:
  • Coronoplasty/Equilibration
    Coronoplasty is smoothing and reshaping the enamel of the teeth to correct your bite. It is a simple procedure that does not require anesthesia and can be used when the bite is only slightly misaligned.
  • Removable Overlay Partials
    These are permanent orthotics that usually fit over the back teeth and are designed to maintain an aligned bite.
  • Reconstruction
    This approach involves making the teeth higher by using crowns. This permanently realigns the bite and provides structural support for the jaw.
  • Orthodontics (Braces)
    When the teeth are healthy they may be moved to the optimal position using braces.
  • For more conservative and optimum results often a combined therapy is required, orthodontics to place the teeth in better position and crowns to strengthen existing heavily restored teeth.