Dr. Chris Hill has studied extensively at the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Education for last 5 years about neuromuscular dentistry. Neuromuscular dentistry is an approach to optimal dental health by balancing the muscles of the head and neck to allow for proper function of the jaw and its joints. NM treatment focuses on placing the jaw in the correct position where the muscles are rest rather than in tension. Dr. Chris Hill uses advanced digital technology to help precisely determine the proper alignment of the upper and lower jaw.
In addition to digital x-rays that reveal the current position of the jaw joints and the structures of the head and neck, Dr. Chris Hill often utilizes several other advanced diagnostic technologies in order to best diagnose optimal positioning of the jaw joints to achieve optimal esthetics and relieve TMJ symptoms such as migraines, tension headaches and jaw soreness.
- CBCT Scan: This is an advanced 3D x-ray that allows us to see the entire head and neck including the teeth, jaw, joints and spine in order to better diagnose our patients’ problems.
- Eletromyography (EMG): Essentially, this measures the muscle activity of different muscles of the head and neck. It allows us to better determine which muscles overstimulated. It also allows us to determine our final position where the muscles are least stimulated. In other words, it helps us determine the end before we even start.
- K7 Jaw Tracking: this allows us to better see the path that the jaw takes when moving and provides us a better understanding of where the jaw should be for optimal positioning of the muscles.
- TENS Unit: This device uses small electrical pulses on the joint muscles in order to relax them to help us better correct the jaw misalignment.
- Sonography/Joint Vibration Analysis: this allows us to listen to the joints to better understand what is happening to the joint disc and allow us to determine the presence of abnormalities.
- T-Scan Digital Bite Analyzer: This device allows us to precisely determine how the teeth touch each other and how much force each tooth is undergoing. By understanding which teeth touch and when, we better understand which muscles are being affected. We can also use this technology in order to balance and adjust the bite.
When properly utilized, neuromuscular dentistry can improve facial esthetics by placing the jaw in the proper position. This allows for better facial proportions. It can also be utilized to correct dysfunction in the joint that may be causing TMJ symptoms.
These symptoms include:
- Muscle tension
- Neck aches
- Sore jaws
- Ringing in the ears
- Shoulder tightness
- Tingling in the fingertips
- Pain behind the eyes
Once we determine where the joint and the jaw needs to be, we have a better understanding of the type of treatment that we can utilize to achieve our patient’s goal. Treatment can include:
- Neuromuscular Orthodontics
- Neuromuscular orthotic
- Full Mouth Reconstruction
- Bite Adjustment