Does Having Invisalign Work Done Increase the Risk of Developing TMJ?

Doctor Answers 3

The risk for TMJ is reduced

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While everyone is different there is a risk reduction when wearing Invisalign. A study in Florida showed fewer TMJ symptoms than those wearing braces and those wearing neither braces nor Invisalign. The explanation is quite simple. Clenching can cause or aggravate TMJ symptoms.  Wearing Invisalign reduces clenching, hence we get a reduction in TMJ symptoms. The reduction is not 100%. There are some that can develop more symptoms but the odds are in your favor.

Encino Orthodontist

Invisalign should not cause TMJ problems

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Most invisalign treatment does not alter the bite on a person's back teeth.  Usually the relationship of the lower jaw to the base of the skull is not changed.  For the most part it addresses esthetic issues related to the front teeth and smile line.  For this reason it will not create a TMJ problem.  If a person has TMJ symptoms already, they should be sure that the dentist knows that, so as not to contribute to it further. 

Martin Frankel, DDS
Toronto Dentist

Any Link Between TMJ and Invisalign Treatment

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Is there a link between Invisalign treatment and TMJ? Is there a link between ANY orthodontic treatment and TMJ?

Following a landmark lawsuit in 1987 where a Michigan patient received a legal judgment against her orthodontist for giving her "TMJ," hundreds of studies and millions of dollars have been spent by the scientific community to find if there really is a relationship between orthodontic treatment and the health of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Obviously this would be an important finding for doctors and patients alike. These studies have examined the different types of bad bite as well as the various approaches to treatment to show any cause and effect relationships.

Time and time again scientific studies have supported the conclusion that orthodontics neither causes nor cures TMJ disorders. Except for two exceptions, malocclusion in general cannot be linked to a higher prevalence of joint problems. The two exceptions are a posterior cross bite that causes the jaw to shift to one side upon closure, and an anterior open bite where all the biting force is on the back teeth only and the front teeth do not touch at all. Scientific studies have been unable to uncover any links between the use of headgear, extractions, rubber bands, oral surgery, or any other treatments and TMJ problems.

Invisalign is just another tool that doctors use to move teeth. You shouldn't have anything to worry about with your jaws or joints.

Greg Jorgensen, DMD, MS
Albuquerque Orthodontist

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.