neuromuscular-dentistryNEUROMUSCULAR DENTISTRY

Neuromuscular Dentistry (NMD) is a science of dentistry which seeks to make sure your jaw is aligned correctly with respect to muscles, joints, and nerves. NMD objectively evaluates the complex relationship between teeth, tempor-mandibular joints (TMJ), muscles and nerves; to determine the ideal resting position of your jaw and correct any misalignment issues so that you can achieve an even bite. Most people don’t realize that their occlusion (bite) can be the primary cause of head and neck pain and other stresses associated with Tempormandibular Disorder(TMD). Dr. Ly has completed hundreds of hours in continuing educational classes devoted to this special area of dentistry. Since each case of TMD is unique, after completing his neuromuscular examination, your data will be assessed and a specialized treatment plan will be designed for you.


A: Technically speaking, TMJ and TMD are two different things. TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint which everyone has, whereas TMD stands for temporomandibular joint disorder.  The two are used interchangeably, so oftentimes you may hear TMD referred to as TMJ disorder.

A: Some common signs and symptoms of TMD are:

Headaches Facial Pain Neck Pain
Jaw Joint Pain Jaw joint noise or clicking Limited Opening
Clinching or grinding Ringing in the ears Dizziness
Difficulty swallowing Sensative Teeth Loose Teeth
Postural Problems Tingling of the fingertips Hot & cold sensitivity
Nervousness or insomnia

A: The NM examination is very thorough. It will include the gathering of your medical and dental history. The dentist will analyze your posture and airway; take molds of your teeth to analyze the appearance and conditions of your teeth, take a bite registration to record your existing bite; take a series of special measurements to record your habitual jaw position, relax the muscles using a gentle electrical stimulation (called TENSing) to record the new ideal NM jaw position.


A: TENSing is Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation. A device called the Myomonitor is used to deliver gentle electrical stimulation to your muscles to help get them to that relaxed state. The stimulation is delivered through adhesive electrodes attached to the skin over muscle sites and nerves that control specific facial muscle groups. The stimulus delivered is virtually painless and will cause your facial and jaw muscles to twitch or “pulse.” This electrically induced “exercise” will usually take 30-60 minutes before your muscles are truly relaxed.