I went to my dentist because my jaw was clicking and I was in pain. I was afraid a tooth had gone wonky. He said I need an anterior repositioning splint. When I ask for him to explain more about it, he said he had another patient and just to schedule another appointment for the splint. I’m a little worried about this. Will my teeth be splinted closed? Will I be able to eat?
I’m very sorry to hear how your dentist handled your question. It is unfair to just expect a patient to “do as their told” without having a thorough understanding of the treatment they’re facing, along with any options.
In regard to the treatment he’s recommending. It is a fairly common treatment for TMJ Disorder when the discs which service the temporomandibular joint (which moves your jaw) is displaced.
An anterior repositioning splint is a custom fit oral device you’ll wear from three to four months to help the jaw move forward, easing it to proper alignment.
It is only meant to be a temporary treatment. Wearing it longer than recommended could cause problems for your bite.
Finding a TMJ Dentist
It’s important you get a TMJ dentist who is thorough and doesn’t just throw random treatments at you. It’s important they invest a lot of time in continuing education, so you know they keep up with the latest studies, techniques, and advancements in technology.
For instance, Dr. Krutchick does 10 times more than the required continuing education for dentists in his state.
Unless there are extreme circumstances, it is always wise to start with the most conservative treatment, as well as diagnose the cause of the pain before getting too ahead of things.
This blog is brought to you by West Seneca Dentist Dr. Warren Krutchick.