This section is a collection of the questions that our patients have asked us more frequently. If you can't find what you're looking for, please at:
Q. I frequently suffer from a strong headache, three to four times a month; during an attack I have to stop everything I'm doing, lie down in the dark, take pain killers and wait several days before I can go back to work. I am being treated by specialists who have prescribed a therapy, but so far I have not seen any improvement regarding the frequency and intensity of the attacks. Is there something else I can do to feel better?
A. Certainly! We have a large case history of patients of all ages, both men and women, whose lives have literally changed by finding the right therapy – without medication – to prevent those excruciating headaches. Correcting the dental occlusion means erasing spasms and contractures in the head and neck, where trigger points are found, i.e. nodular regions that are tightly contracted and extremely painful, which in turn trigger a string of considerable symptoms, first of all pain.
Q. My jaw makes a noise when I eat, sometimes it gets stuck and I can't open my mouth. What can be done?
A. You need to remedy the complaint or it will develop further and will not regress spontaneously; in practice there is an incongruence between the mandibular joint and the meniscus, which is made of cartilage. This means that while opening and closing the mouth, they are not working in synergy and consensually. If ignored, the complaint evolves into a degeneration of the joint capsule and can lead to condyle arthrosis, which at that point is irreversible and cannot be treated.
Q. I often feel dizzy and unstable, can this be caused by my teeth?
A. Yes, when the arches don't fit, this causes spasms and asymmetric contractures of the cranial and cervical muscles, therefore compromising the vestibular control of your sense of balance.
Q. I often suffer from a “stiff neck”. My physiotherapist manages to temporarily de-contract the muscles on my neck, but shortly after the complaint reappears. Can the cause be dental occlusion?
A. Yes, if the jaw needs to force its way to make contact with its antagonist arch and the masticatory muscles are not engaging in a physiological movement, they can start to spasm and consequently engage the neck muscles, first of all the sternocleidomastoid muscle, which is responsible for “stiff necks”.
Q. I sometimes wake up clenching my teeth and find it difficult to open my mouth. Can something be done?
A. Yes, bruxism – grinding your teeth at night – is a parafunctional habit that puts the teeth, joints and musculature under stress; it needs to be treated in order to protect the teeth from wear, muscles from painful hypertension, and joints from dysfunction.
Q . My son is 12 years old. He tells me that when he opens his mouth he hears a clicking sound, just before his ear. What should I do? Will it disappear as he grows?
A . The boy already has a clear sign of malocclusion, his jaw in other words is forced into a backward position, a retrusion, caused perhaps by a narrow palate generally due to breathing with an open mouth. An incongruence has therefore occurred between the mandibular joint and the cartilage, which should be treated promptly as this issue evolves and is not liable to self-correct over time.
Q. For a while I have had a persistent pain in one ear, some times I can hear whistling and hissing and feel as if my ear was blocked; the ear specialist could not identify any specific illness. They tell me it could be something related to the mouth, is that true?
A. Yes, a perioral muscular pathology alters the physiology of the duct that joins the pharynx to the inner ear, causing deficiencies and imbalances.
Q . I have had strong pain in one tooth, but neither the intraoral X-ray nor the routine dental semeiotic procedures have highlighted any issues to the tooth in question. They want to kill the nerve or extract the tooth. What should I do, since I've been taking pain killers for several days and nothing has changed?
A . Check the occlusion! Spasms and muscular contractions that result from a bad dental occlusion can facilitate a trigger point inside a muscle, which is in turn capable of producing a so-called referred pain, i.e. pain that is projected and perceived in another area, perhaps where the molar teeth and incisors are, therefore simulating.
Q. For a while I have had paresthesia, in particular I feel a tingling sensation and numbness in two fingers. I have already been operated for carpal tunnel syndrome. What else could it be?
A. Occlusion once more. A forced posture in the mandibular retrusion can in fact cause contractions in some neck muscles, known as scalene muscles, which are in turn responsible for trapping the nervous roots of the brachial plexus. This is how a paraesthetic symptomatology arises.
Q . Some times I have difficulty swallowing solid and even liquid foods, as if I wasn't capable of coordinating the swallowing reflex. What can I do?
A . It is highly likely that there is an incongruence in the dental occlusion, which is responsible for a bad posture and therefore wrong ergonomics in the masticatory muscles. The automatic mechanisms and reflexes that oversee the swallowing reflex may therefore be altered.
Q. I have worn fixed dental braces on both arches for almost two years, and subsequently wore one every night for a year and a half as a follow-up procedure. After less than a year following the containing phase, I noticed that my teeth had moved slightly, with recidivism and a partial reappearance of former alignment defects, buy viagra online cheap particularly in the lower front teeth which rotated and overlapped again. My orthodontist tells me this is due to the wisdom teeth, which coming out have moved the other teeth in the arch, causing crowding and recidivism. Is this true?
A. No, this is untrue. Wisdom teeth don't have, like any other tooth, an eruptive force strong enough to push the seven teeth that precede it. If they did, there would be no inclusive molars, canines or incisives. If a crowded recidivism occurs during the appearance of wisdom teeth, this is rather due to the simultaneous growth of the jaw along the sagittal plane, so the diameter of the maxillary arch is not capable of matching the diameter of the mandibular arch which is generally smaller, followed by a consequent adaptation of the teeth.
Q. I frequently suffer strong pain in the jaw. The ear specialist has treated me for sinusitis even though I don't have a congested nose; I've been taking anti-inflammatory medication and antibiotics for periods of one to two weeks, but as as soon as I interrupt the medication the sudden and intense pain starts again. I've also tried thermal inhalations but with no lasting effects. What else can I do?
A . An incongruous dental occlusion produces tensions and discomfort in the facial musculature, causing triggers which are responsible for pain in that area, for instance in the cheekbones and/or eyebrows. The masticatory apparatus should therefore be checked and adequate therapy started if needed.
Q . When I receive the orthotic device, will I wear it only at night?
A . No, this is a muscular and joint support. It will have to be worn at all times, and removed only to clean your teeth and to eat, if needed.
Q. Is the orthotic device visible?
A. It is transparent and completely invisible at talking distance.
Q. Will the orthotic device make it difficult to speak ?
A. No, after the first 24 hours it will become so comfortable that you won't want to take it off.
Q. When will I see the first results from wearing the orthotic device?
A. Generally the decrease and disappearance of pain and dysfunctional symptoms takes two to three sessions.
Q. When I finally get better and will no longer feel pain or complaints, will I be able to remove the orthotic device and finish the therapy?
A . No, at that point we shall have to think of stabilising the new dental occlusion, by bringing the teeth to irreversibly and permanently close in the position set by the orthotic device, with a subsequent needs-based prosthetic or orthodontic therapy.
Q. Is there a risk that the orthotic device will damage my teeth?
A. Absolutely not, if basic hygiene rules are respected.