Neuromuscular Dentistry Thousand Oaks
Did you know that you can now get relief from: headaches, teeth and jaw pain?
Neuromuscular dentistry focuses on the relationship between your teeth, jaw joints, head muscles and neck. These areas can help define your level of (dis)comfort every day and improving this relationship can significantly relieve pain and stress.
If your teeth are worn down or chipped, and you have experienced one or more of the following symptoms, an incorrect bite or jaw position may be the cause of your discomfort.
- Other headaches
- Loose teeth
- Teeth grinding
- Facial pain
- Receding gums
- Shoulder, neck and back pain
- Restricted jaw movement
Misalignment in the jaw, jaw joints, or the position of the teeth has a direct effect on the whole system of opening and closing the jaw. To find the proper balance between the three, specialized training and state-of-the-art neuromuscular dentistry technology is required.
Using sophisticated computerized EMG (electromyography of the jaw muscles), TMJ sonography, and magnetic jaw tracking equipment, Dr. Johnstone can identify the ideal bite position of your jaw. Imagine removing this debilitating pain and discomfort and returning to a normal everyday lifestyle.
Hard nightguards, soft nightguards, and orthotics are the three most common types of oral appliances that are regularly used to support and protect the jaw joints, muscles,
The three appliances may appear to be very similar, but the functional difference in the mouth are significant. Different appliances are used for different purposes, and are not interchangeable.
Once the most common style of nightguards, this type of guard is slowly falling out of favor. While a soft nightguard will protect the teeth from being damaged further from grinding, studies are showing that a soft nightguard can actually encourage grinding up to 50%. Professionally made custom soft guards are small and comfortable, but may wear down a bit quicker than hard guards. This is a good cost effective option for someone looking to protect their teeth from grinding damage, but do not have TMJ or headache pain.
The hard nightguard is small and low profile yet very durable. They are generally recommended for moderate to extreme grinders and clenchers and/or for people suffering from TMJ discomfort. Hard nightguards also snap on and stay in place.
An orthotic appliance is the most specialized of the three. Unlike the hard or soft nightguards, an orthotic is designed to align the lower jaw and its supporting muscles into a more comfortable position and bite. Orthotics are used to stabilize the bite and minimize the symptoms of TMJ discomfort. Unlike soft and hard nightguards, an orthotic requires both impressions, AND a relaxed bite registration, which takes much more time and expertise than fabricating just a hard or soft nightguard.
There are many different kinds and types of Dental Insurance Plans. More correctly referred to as Dental Benefit Plans, these plans can be confusing, frustrating, and difficult to deal with. There are indemnity, PPO, HMO, and discount dental benefit plans.
Indemnity plans or Traditional Insurance plans reimburses it’s members or dentists at the dentist’s Usual, Customary and Reasonable fee (UCR). These plans allow the subscriber to go to any dental office with out being limited to a panel.
PPO, or Prefrred Provider Organization, is the most common form of benefit plans. PPO’s provide members with a list of participating dentists to choose from. These dentists have agreed to a lower fee schedule, which provides the patient with a greater cost savings. Most PPO’s pay 50% on major treatments, 80% for basic care, and up to 100% for preventative care. These plans usually have maximums around the $1000 – $1500 mark. Once the PPO has paid out their $1000 maximum, they will no longer cover treatment for that year. At this point, the client must cover their own dental expenses.
HMO‘s are capitated or prepaid insurances. HMO’s were designed to provide members with basic care at the lowest rate. Participating HMO providers receive a monthly capitation check for the total number of people assigned to the office. This amount is only a few dollars and is intended to offset the administrative costs. HMO’s generally do not pay for any services rendered. Fees are usually greatly reduced, but it is the client who is solely responsible for paying the doctor. An odd thing about HMO plans is that the doctor earns the most by doing the least amount of treatment.
Dental bonding and dental veneers are two different ways to accomplish the goal of changing the visual appearance of teeth. Bonding is accomplished with the direct placement of a tooth colored composite resin material onto the tooth. Bonding is great in an emergency situation of a fractured tooth, or for minor corrections of teeth shapes, contour, or spacing. However, bonding usually isn’t used to make over an entire smile. It is intended for minor imperfections and repairs such as chips and small breaks, or uneven spacing between teeth. Unlike veneers, bonding can and will stain over time, and will need to be replaced more often than veneers because they do not hold up as well cosmetically.
Veneers are porcelain facings that are bonded to the front surface of a tooth. They are hand made and designed specifically for you. Color, shape, contour, length can all be controlled to your desires, and can truly transform your smile. It is nearly impossible to tell the difference between well made veneers and natural teeth. Ideally, 8-10 veneers are done to completely enhance your look.
Veneers are also a much longer lasting, more stable way to beautify a smile as they do not change color and are made from a more robust porcelain. Bonding, while effective in the short term, tends to not last as long and can stain over time. Often, people may chose bonding over veneers because bonding can be more financially affordable, but due to their need to be more often replaced, this initial price savings may end up costing you more in the long term.
Did you know that your home dental care routine is one of the MOST important factors in your oral health? Here are some quick tips to help you make it more effective.
1.Floss BEFORE you brush! Yes. Flossing will get the gunk out from in between your teeth, and the tooth brush will brush it away. Then the flouride in the toothpaste can better penetrate in between the teeth and make the enamel more resistant to decay.
2. Hold your toothbrush at a 45 degree angle to your gums and brush in small circles. And, don’t forget to brush the chewing surfaces of your teeth too!
3.Brush your tongue! A lot of debris can accumulate on your tongue, and is most likely to be the cause of bad breath. Brush in a circular motion, brushing as much as you can (without gaging).
Ask us a Question
We are happy to answer any oral health related questions.