I had a lot of TMJ pain and went through braces and a mandibular osteotomy advancement about 5 years ago with good results. It pretty much resolved my pain however over the last year I have noticed the pain starting to return. When I look at my bite I can see that the back lower teeth have depressed into the gums some, more like they were before I had braces, and it's causing my bite to deepen. If this is indeed the cause of the pain returning can Invisalign correct this or would I need braces again?
Can Invisalign Help Me with TMJ Problems?
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Doctor Answers 4
Invisalign can help with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems.
One of the most significant causes of TMJ are dental malocclusions ("bad bites"). When properly diagnosed and treatment planned, Invisalign can be an effective treatment to correct and/or alleviate pain and damage to the TMJ. Conditions such as "deep bites" and "edge to edge" bites can be very traumatic to the TMJ causing neuromuscular pain and spasm. These conditions can be effectively treated with Invisalign.
Deep bite returning after TMJ correction indicates relapse occurring
Thank you for your very clear explanation of your current problem. You are receiving great advice from both Dr. Firouzian and Dr. Neuhaus who have already commented on your situation. As one who has practiced neuromuscular orthodontics/dentistry for the last 28 years, I believe it is by far the most reliable and scientific method to use for correction of TMJ Dysfunction. I am glad your initial success 5 years ago was good, but it seem that your deep bite returning and the depression of posterior teeth is an indication of instability of not only the TMJs but the occlusion as well. A correction of this type of problem should not need correction every 5-10 years, but can even last a lifetime if future trauma doesn't throw things off. The advice about beginning with a neuromuscularly balanced orthotic initially to correctly position the lower jaw, relieve symptoms, and stabilize the joints prior to either braces or Invisalign is excellent and is needed to get that long term stability talked about. I hope this is helpful to you.
Invisalign for TMJ treatment
You should find an experienced neuromuscular dentist in your area who also performs orthodontic treatment for TMJ correction. I've treated many TMJ patients with neuromuscular orthodontics successfully by first having them wear a removable orthotic appliance to see if their symptoms are alleviated before moving their teeth. I've found invisalign to not be very effective in correction of collapsed bites or deep bites but that's not to say it won't work for you. Good luck.
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Invisalign & TMJ Pain
If your bite is collapsing now, that could very well be the cause of your TMJ pain returning. Do a search online for a Neuromuscular Dentist in your area. We are very well trained in diagnosing and treating TMJ problems caused by poor bites. My advice to you is to determine the correct bite BEFORE initiating any orthodontic treatment, whether it be standard or Invisalign. Know beforehand if the new bite position will correct your TMJ symptoms.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.