Although Temporomandibular Disorders can become a chronic problem often associated with some permanent damage from trauma to the head, neck, back, or temporomandibular joint, even in the worst cases the symptoms can be eliminated through proper professional care.
Treatments for Facial/ Jaw Pain/ Temporomandibular Disorders
Our approach is a comprehensive program for treating TMD/ “TMJ” and associated symptoms. It involves:
- A thorough screening and in-office assessment, including of the head and neck
- An airway breathing disorder screening to evaluate a potential risk for Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- A computerized assessment of biting forces and their relationship to healthy muscle and joint positioning with Advanced Computer TMJ Functional Analysis
- Specific splint therapy
- Massage therapy
- Laser therapy
- Alpha-Stim microcurrent: Low-level gentle microcurrent
- Home products and therapy
Detailed Description of Temporomandibular Disorders Treatment:
There are three components in the treatment of Temporomandibular Disorders symptoms:
- IMBALANCE of the BITE/OCCLUSION
- IMBALANCE among the MUSCLES and JOINTS of the JAW, HEAD, and NECK
- STRESS IMBALANCE and HOME CARE
1) IMBALANCE of the BITE/OCCLUSION
Successful diagnosis and treatment of your TMJ condition require state-of-the-art technology. We use the only computerized test that can accurately and objectively measure your occlusion/bite. Do not leave your bite to chance!
For years, dentists have had to use a large amount of guesswork in diagnosing dental occlusion. Imprecise tools such as articulation paper, waxes, and pressure indicator paste were all we had to assess and balance the forces of the bite with the muscles and joints of the head and neck. Most of these methods are not sensitive enough to detect simultaneous contact, and none measure both biting time and force … critical components in diagnosing TMD.
2) IMBALANCE among the MUSCLES and JOINTS of the JAW, HEAD, and NECK
We use four modalities to BALANCE and relax the MUSCLES and JOINTS of the JAW, HEAD, and NECK.
First: Ultrasound helps break up scar tissue and adhesions and bring blood flow to the area. Ultrasound works on the deeper muscles and tissues, using penetrating sound waves and heat.
Second: Massage helps relax the muscles, bring blood flow to the area, stimulate healing, and locate “trigger points” in the muscles. Trigger points are tiny knots or balls in the muscle that contain lactic acid and create pain wind-up loops. These trigger points refer pain from the muscle to other areas of the body. For example, a trigger point in the upper shoulder may refer pain into the jaw and/or face.
Third: Alpha-Stim microcurrent* helps break up the trigger points located through massage. Alpha-Stim sends a low electrical current that produces ATP (adenosine triphosphate, the major source of energy for cellular reactions), which relaxes and unwinds the trigger point. This action releases the build-up of lactic acid, and the pain both in that area and in the referring areas is reduced.
Fourth: Low-level laser increases the healing time of the muscles and joints by 25-35%! The low-level laser uses a nonheat laser light to send a signal to the muscles and nerves to produce ATP – energy – thereby allowing the muscles to relax, increasing blood flow to the area, and reducing pain. Then, the laser sends a signal to the brain to help inhibit pain.
*Alpa-Stim microcurrent – FDA cleared and clinically proven.
- Alpha-Stim delivers a dose of microcurrent that is almost undetectable.
- These “microcurrents” attempt to mimic the body’s own natural electrical functions.
- “Patients with treatment-resistant depression and migraines have shown significantelevations in plasma serotonin.” University of Miami’s School of Medicine quotes, “Increases in cerebrospinal fluid level of beta- endorphins up to 219%, plasma endorphins up to 98%, and cerebrospinal fluid serotonin up to 200% have been demonstrated in normal volunteers receiving 20 minutes CES [cranial electrotherapy stimulation].”
3) STRESS IMBALANCE and HOME CARE
We offer a complete home-care program designed to reduce and manage pain and headaches.
- Neck ice pack and home exercise instructions
- MSM lotion and capsules
- Biofeedback and relaxation CDs
- Microcurrent unit*