Dr. Dmytrowski, winner of the Faces Magazine Award for Ottawa's Favourite Dentist 2017

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Kanata Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Dysfunction

It is estimated that millions of people in North America suffer from a wide array of neuromuscular disorders, which may be related to the temporomandibular joint (“TMJ”). 

The TMJ and surrounding muscles link the lower jaw, or mandible, to the bone at the side of the head.  You can feel this joint in action by placing your fingers at the side of your head, just in front of your ears.  When you open and shut your mouth you will feel the joint flexing and relaxing.  The TMJ is one of the most complicated joints in the human body because of its dual hinge and sliding capacity.  The flexibility of the TMJ is demonstrated in its ability to smoothly move up-and-down (aiding in verbal communication) and side-to-side (enabling the chewing of food).  Since there is a delicately balanced relationship between the jaw joint, teeth, head and neck muscles, and head posture, a problem in any one of these areas may affect the others.

There are many potential causes of TMJ disorders, some of which are still unknown and not all are fully understood.  The bite can be a factor in many of these conditions thanks to the inter-relationship of the overall musculoskeletal systems.  This is where a neuromuscular dentist may help resolve the problem.

Signs and Symptoms of TMD

You may typically think that a number of the symptoms mentioned above as being conditions unrelated to dentistry.  However, an imperfect bite often plays a significant role in these conditions.  This is where Dr. Yolande Dmytrowski may help diagnose and treat TMD.

Neuromuscular dentistry

Neuromuscular dentistry is a branch of dentistry that focuses on three dimensions of the mouth: teeth, head and neck muscles and the TMJ (jaw joints).  Dr. Dmytrowski is a practitioner of neuromuscular dentistry and is proud to offer to the community options for alleviating some often painful and disabling disorders.  However, diagnosing these problems is very challenging and may require the collaborative efforts of other health care professionals such as a chiropractor, a massage therapist, or an ENT specialist, to name just a few.

Neuromuscular dentistry treatments for TMD

A number of the abovementioned conditions can be resolved simply. Likewise, some cases can be complex and frustrating, depending on the circumstances. If there are strong indications that the bite is a major factor in your problem, through the use of non-invasive electronic equipment, the neuromuscular dentist will identify a jaw position where the muscles are in a more relaxed state. As a result, the bite will also become more comfortable.  An orthotic will then be fabricated to maintain the new derived bite position.  If wearing the orthotic solves or reduces the problem, then you have the choice to go on with further treatment that can permanently alter your teeth and your bite.