You & Your Bite

Jaw muscle pain may be the result of occlusal (bite) problems. At Mint Dental in Bradenton, we provides comprehensive dental care that includes TMD/TMJ diagnosis and treatment.

Our teeth are negatively affected by three diseases: decay (cavities), periodontal (gum) disease, and occlusal (bite) disease. Most people are acquainted with the signs, symptoms, and treatment of the first two, and all dentists are trained in the diagnosis and treatment of decay and periodontal disease. These two diseases are progressive unless controlled through treatment and may lead to loss of teeth and bone structure if left untreated. Dr. Aneja will recommend appropriate treatment to deal with these diseases as early as possible to minimize their negative effects on your health, function and appearance.

But what about occlusal disease? Have you heard this term before?

Occlusion is the way your teeth come together and work against each other when you speak, eat, and grind your teeth under tension. Your occlusion is determined by the size, shape and position of your teeth in opposition to each other and the way your muscles and jaw joints accommodate any present tooth interferences. Tooth interferences are not normal or desired, yet they are prevalent in most people, ranging from minimal to severe. Occlusal disease is not an infection. The repeated stress of tooth interferences and/or abnormal jaw activity such as grinding can manifest itself in mild to severe tooth wear, cracked or broken teeth (especially around older silver fillings), loose teeth, jaw pain, ear pain, head and neck aches, and the like. The term commonly associated with these signs and symptoms is TMD or Temporomandibular Joint Disorder.

Dr. Aneja has pursued advanced dental education to develop skills in recognizing the signs of occlusal disease and providing appropriate treatment. She is able to:

Your Mint Dental dentist can provide treatment to:

  • Halt occlusal damage to your natural teeth and dental restorations with a with a night guard appliance that can also be worn during the day.
  • Make you comfortable and stabilize your jaw joints using bite splint therapy prior to modifying your bite to align teeth and equalize the load in harmonious function.
  • Modify the alignment of your teeth and the shape of the tops of your teeth and dental restorations to balance your bite.
  • And in the process of this treatment, even reverse some, if not all injury that has occurred in your jaw joints, jawbones and muscles.

Damage to teeth is not reversible but fortunately today’s materials and technology enable Dr. Aneja to restore teeth to strong function and pristine condition. Recognizing occlusal disease as early as possible increases the probability that you will still have “young” teeth at an elderly age and be able to avoid a lot of restorations. Many of the dental crowns, bridges and other repairs adults typically need might be avoided if the signs of occlusal disease are recognized and addressed in the early stages.

Every time, you come to Mint Dental for a comprehensive exam or check-up, Dr. Aneja will be looking for signs and symptoms of occlusal disease. When she does a comprehensive smile makeover or restores damaged teeth, she will include occlusal adjustment that will ensure functional harmony and long-lasting predictable dentistry.