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                                                        DR. DAN PETERSON

                                                                      1415 SAGE STREET ~ GERING, NEBRASKA 69341 
      Call: 308-436-3491           

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 A splint can help relieve the discomforts of TMJ/TMD

Bite Splint 

     Collectively all bite plates or splints all do the same thing, that is, provide an acrylic platform to bite against.

     Bite plates are a very effective to relieve TMD symptoms.  No one bite plate design has been shown to b consistently more effective than any other.  **.  

     Some bite plate designed to move the mandible to a new position.  Unintended problems associated with these appliances include inadvertent movement of teeth.

    Partial coverage appliances have the potential to depress teeth under the appliance and cause super-eruption of the teeth that are not covered.

     Soft appliances can be deformed by clenching and may unintentionally move teeth and open interproximal contacts.  Considering all these facts, the simplest design is the most desirable. **

     The design that provides the least chances of producing and unexpected change in the occlusion or bite is a hard appliance covering all the teeth in the arch, utilizing a flat biting surface adjusted to provide even contact in habitual closure.    Upper bite plates is what our office uses because they have an advantage over lower jaw appliances because biting contact can be distributed over the entire surface of the appliance.  Lower jaw appliances can not adequately include contact with the maxillary central incisors without the risk of pushing these teeth labially.  However  if you have missing teeth, then the arch with most missing teeth needs to be covered.

     In general it should NOT be worn 24 hours a day.  It is to be worn part-time for most people night time is best.

Ideal of what splint placement looks like in the mouth

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Your dentist needs to educated you on self care techniques  and:

bulletSoft Diet
bulletHabit reduction:
bulletLearning how to rest the tongue, teeth and lips properly
bulletLearn to control bad habits, i.e., chewing on ice, chewing gum nervously
bulletChewing habitually only on one side of your mouth
bulletHome physical therapy
bulletHot or cold compress for 2-3 minutes
bulletMassage in circular motion for 5 seconds
bulletStretch mouth open to comfortable level 5 seconds.
bulletMuscle relaxation
bulletOTC medication

**Initial Management of TMD; Dr. Syrop; Dentistry Today pg 52-57; August 2002

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PLEASE NOTE: The information contained herein is intended for educational purposes only.  It is not intended and should not be construed as the delivery of dental/medical care and is not a substitute for personal hands on dental/medical attention, diagnosis or treatment.  Persons requiring diagnosis, treatment, or with specific questions are urged to contact your family dental/health care provider for appropriate care.
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