When teeth do not fit together and hit improperly (malocclusion) they can force the lower jaw out of position upon closure. This causes the jaw muscles to react with spasms and become irritated and can lead to headaches, neck and shoulder pain.
Immediate Option For TMJ Pain Relief:An occlusal bite splint fits over the upper teeth and disengages the malocclusion and interferences thereby establishing a non-stressful bite relationship. It disengages the occlusion and allows the jaw to relax and reduce irritation within the jaw muscles and joints. This is a comfortable and removable option that requires no invasive techniques.
Orthodontic treatment to reduce the offending malocclusion is a more comprehensive long-term solution to allow a more normal closure of the lower jaw in harmony with the muscles. This treatment is usually followed by an occlusal bite splint which functions as a retainer and also promotes a less stressful bite relationship.