A bite is considered to be healthy when all or most of the teeth are present and not destroyed by normal daily usage.
It is destructive when teeth show wear, looseness or when TMJ (jaw joint) damage is seen. Bite therapy helps restore a bite that can function without damage and destruction. The therapy may include:
- Reshaping the biting surfaces of the teeth and eliminating spots of excessive pressures where the teeth are brought into contact. This is done by carefully dividing bite pressures evenly across all of the teeth.
- Bite splint therapy using a custom-fitted and adjusted plastic bite guard to keep the teeth apart, worn during the day, at night, or both.
- Braces to reposition mal-aligned or drifted teeth.
- Replacement of old, worn out, or damaged fillings.
- Reconstruction of badly worn and damaged teeth.
How can I know if my bite is “off?”
During your examination, your doctor will examine your jaw closely and evaluate for signs that your bite may be off. Some signs include uneven closing of the jaw on both sides, popping or clicking noises upon opening or closing, wear facets in areas where the enamel has been ground away, or fractured teeth. Chronic symptoms of bruxism, such as headaches, neck aches, or jaw pain, are also clues that the bite may be off.
How is my bite fixed?
Before the procedure begins, we will have you bite on a very thin piece of colored paper. The paper transfers color to the areas where contact occurs. The doctor will then smooth the area where the marks have been left by removing just enough of the tooth or restoration to eliminate the interference. This process will be done on all areas where the paper left color on the tooth until the teeth meet together in a proper position.