Teeth that are correctly aligned are designed to fit together smoothly. However, tiny interferences that may occur as a result of normal wear, genetics, accidents, or even some forms of dental work like crowns, can make closing the jaw properly impossible. Occlusal adjustment is a procedure in which Dr. Silverstein or Dr. Parker is able to remove the small imperfections so that the jaw is able to close in alignment.
It is important for the jaw to open and close correctly because it allows the muscles of the jaw and neck to rest. If the jaw can not close correctly, patients may develop issues with those muscles. Headaches, neck aches, and bruxism may develop as the jaw seeks to find alignment. Bruxism is important to avoid as it can lead to bone loss, tooth loss, and receding gums as well as issues with tempromandibular joint disorder.
You may experience the following symptoms if your jaw is not aligned:
- Clicking sound in the jaw when you open or close your mouth
- Inability to open the jaw evenly on both sides
- Ground away enamel in certain places
- Fractured Teeth
- Chronic Headaches or Neck Aches
How is my bite fixed?
Dr. Silverstein or Dr. Parker will check your bite by asking you to bite down on a piece of Mylar paper. Mylar paper transfer color to the teeth where they come in contact. Using these colored marks, the doctor can then remove small amounts of enamel, smoothing the area where the teeth meet. He will remove just enough enamel to remove the interference in your teeth. When the procedure is complete, you should be able to close your mouth correctly, allowing the jaw and neck muscles to relax.