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The True Culprit of TMJ/TMD Pain: Lactic Acid

July 10, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — advanced @ 4:22 pm
young woman holding her sore jaw due to TMJ/TMD

The pain caused by TMD is almost always due to the overworking of the jaw muscles,  which causes a build-up of lactic acid. If this term sounds familiar, that is because it is what makes muscles sore and stiff after any rigorous exercise. Of course, most TMD patients do not experience pain only in their jaw, but often their head, neck, and ears as well.

Is this due to lactic acid as well? Why does the body produce a substance that causes serious discomfort? Can TMJ treatment in Portland prevent it? We answer these questions and more in today’s blog.

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Why Mouthguards Are Ineffective When Treating TMJ/TMD

July 3, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — advanced @ 4:04 pm
close-up of an athletic mouthguard

You can only open your mouth to a certain “comfort zone” before the muscles respond and overwork. If you are open too far, the reflex is for your teeth to work (i.e., grind away the tooth structure) to return your jaw to its correct position. If you are over-closed, the muscles also clench and grind, to try to find their right vertical position(which they cannot ever find, as there is inadequate tooth left).  

If you are already in your comfort zone, or if your bite is over-opened, you will have to fight to keep your mouthguard in your mouth, as your muscles and tongue will want to kick it out. If this sounds familiar, it is because it is very common. Your body knows when treatment is not going to help with your problems, and over-opening a bite will create a great number of long-term problems.  

If your bite is over-closed, though, there is a good chance that a well-designed and adjusted mouthguard will provide significant relief, and can certainly improve your facial appearance as well. Depending upon how far open the bite needs to be, an orthotic can be worn, invisibly, for months at a time, being removed only for cleaning, or for heavy meals. At Advanced Dental Arts NW, we use these orthotics not only to remedy the immediate problems of grinding and clenching, but also for neck and some shoulder pain, much of which arises from a bad bite.  

Once we know WHERE your bite is comfortable, we can get you there through a variety of options, each of which we would discuss with you from the get-go.  

Have you been prescribed a mouthguard to treat your TMJ disorder/TMD? Are you still experiencing jaw pain and headaches despite diligently wearing your appliance every night? Unfortunately, this situation is all too common. If you talk to most patients over the long-term, mouthguards actually do very little to solve TMD-related symptoms, and in many cases, they can actually make things worse! Here are the top 4 reasons mouthguards should not be used for TMJ treatment in Portland.

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How DTR Addresses the Cause of TMD – Not Just the Symptoms

June 4, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — advanced @ 9:16 pm

If your car is malfunctioning in some way, but you are not entirely sure what the underlying problem could be – how would you approach correcting the issue? One option might be to listen and make adjustments to the best of your ability based on internet research. Conversely, you could seek out help from an expert. The first thing they would do? Perform a fully objective, computerized evaluation of all systems, allowing them to not only properly diagnose the issue, but efficiently and effectively resolve it.

While the first option could result in a lucky outcome, and the results could hold you over temporarily, it goes without saying that this solution is likely just a patchwork fix and the result will not be lasting. You will end up frustrated and ultimately waste time, energy, resources, and money.

What happens if you apply the same principles to a persistent case of TMJ disorder/TMD? Just as with your car, it matters to be able to measure data objectively. Moreover, taking an analytical approach can lead to a clear confirmation that the components of a system are working as they should. Whether you are dealing with automobile gears or facial muscles, that kind of objectivity is a big deal.

Many patients do not realize that Disclusion Time Reduction Therapy (DTR) is a new computerized dentistry that can provide this information. Finally, it is possible to discover clinical answers that lead to true, long-term relief from chronic jaw discomfort.

Keep reading to learn more about DTR and how it addresses TMD at its roots in a way more intuition-based dental treatment simply has not, does not, and cannot.

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The Difference Between Mouthguards and DTR For TMJ/TMD Therapy

May 2, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — advanced @ 4:33 pm
young woman smiling thanks to TMJ treatment in Portland

Mouthguards are a very common prescribed treatment for TMJ disorder/TMD, and while they are great for keeping your teeth safe while playing sports, they are woefully unable to help most people suffering from chronic jaw and head pain caused by TMD. Here at Advanced Dental Arts NW, we instead use DTR (Disclusion Time Reduction) therapy to identify the source of the problem and solve it with extreme precision to provide a lifetime of relief instead of lacking, temporary alleviation. So, why is DTR therapy so superior compared to mouthguards when it comes to TMJ treatment in Portland? You can find out exactly why below.

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