The chewing system is composed of bones, temporomandibular joint (jaw joint), ligaments, masticatory muscles, teeth and surrounding supporting tissues. The functional used of this system includes, chewing, swallowing and speaking. However, some individuals perform parafunctional activities such as lip biting, lip and finger sucking, pencil and nail biting, abnormal positioning of the jaw, and BRUXISM (teeth grinding and clenching during the day and during sleep), that have some destructive effects on the masticatory system. The most devastating effect of these activities is bruxism. According to studies, Psychosocial factors such as stress, biological factors, genetic and external (exogenous) factors such as smoking can cause bruxism.
- Tooth erosion
- Broken teeth, implants or restorations (removable or fixed restorations, bridges etc)
- Teeth or Implant loss
- Pain on teeth and chewing muscles
- Difficulty in opening mouth
- Pain or tenderness in the tempomandibular joint
- Periodontal tissue loss and jaw bone resorption
- Chewing muscle hypertrophy (increase in muscle volüme)
- Dislocation of tempomandibular joint disc
The problems caused by bruxism result from the application of more force than the physiological structures can take. In healthy individuals, the teeth are only in contact during swallowing, chewing and pronouncing certain letters. In bruxism, the patient tightens his teeth in the intercuspidation (the teeth are closed) and / or contacts occur during the eccentric (forward-backward and right-left) movements of the jaw.
The incidence of bruxism in the society varies between 8-31.4%.
During the clinical evaluation, hyperkeratosis areas in the oral mucosa of the cheeks, lace-like appearance indicates pressure caused by the teeth in the tongue and lips, tooth wear, tooth and implant fractures are examined. Chewing muscles are also usually examined. In some cases, complementary methods may be needed for diagnosis.
The most commonly used treatment modality in the treatment of bruxism in the world is the use of an OCCLUSAL SPLINT. This treatment is a reversible and noninvasive treatment option that temporarily changes the functional relationships in the masticatory system.
Benefits of using Occlusal Splint
- Reduces bruxism and occlusal parafunctions to ensure the distribution of excessive forces
- Prevents tooth erosion
- Treats muscular pain
- Changes occulusal forces
- Treats pain caused by TMD
- Provides neuromuscular coordination
- Increases the occlusal vertical size
- Improves TMJ function