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TMJ & Occlusal Health

Personalized Relief from Pain and Discomfort

Dr. Valo is committed to providing comprehensive care and taking care of the whole you. Patients who come to us experiencing pain and discomfort are often assessed for symptoms of occlusal disease, caused by misalignment in the lower and upper dental arches. Undiagnosed and untreated pain causes dental damage and serious issues within supporting bones, gum, temporomandibular joints (TMJ), and jaw muscles that assist with chewing foods.



Common Occlusal Disease symptoms include:
  • Sensitive teeth with cracking or breakage // Receding gums // Bone loss // Muscle pain

Quite often TMJ and TMD are confused. TMJ is the joint itself, while TMD is the disorder of the joint with symptoms such as clenched teeth, headaches, jaw locking, tired feeling in the face, difficulty chewing, and facial swelling. The team at Valo Dentistry may suspect TMD if we notice you have cracked or worn teeth, broken fillings or crowns, sensitivity, or loose teeth caused by bone loss. TMD and its symptoms are a common sign of Occlusal Disease.

We believe in a philosophy of centric relation to help relieve your TMD symptoms and return you to full function, free of discomfort. Centric relation is the most natural, relaxed position for your jaw. Your jaw goes into centric relation whenever you swallow, becoming fully seated in its joint.

When you close your mouth and one or more teeth hit and deflect so you have to move your jaw forward or to the side to make your teeth mesh properly, a conflict occurs in the function of your teeth, jaw, and muscles — and the muscles always win. Unfortunately, this muscle victory can lead to grinding or clenching of teeth, and part of the system — usually the teeth — inevitably breaks down. This chronic problem can leave you with severe discomfort and a damaged smile.

We’re here to create a personalized diagnosis. Possible solutions can include bite adjustment or reshaping, further orthodontic care and/or repositioning surgery, and restorative procedures. Dr. Valo can also fit patients with customized removable appliances such as an occlusal guard or orthotic substitute. Thanks to a trusted team of specialists — including orthodontists, oral surgeons, physical therapists, and psychologists for biofeedback/cognitive assistance — we can help rid you of the pain and discomfort by finding and restoring your properly balanced bite.