How It Affects More than Appearance
Occlusion describes how symmetrically-aligned your upper and lower teeth are when your bite is at rest. An even bite (malocclusion) enables you to enjoy a meal or engage in conversation without discomfort. For many people, an uneven bite or tooth misalignment can lead to a number of serious dental health issues, including enamel wear, TMJ disorder, and even restoration failure. Treating occlusal disease helps correct misalignment and improves the health and function of your bite.
What is Occlusal Disease?
Occlusal disease occurs when misaligned teeth or an imbalanced jaw place excessive pressure on the teeth and jaw joints. If not treated;
- Your enamel may begin to wear away, increasing the risk of tooth decay and exposing the sensitive inner tooth structure to harmful bacteria.
- In addition, untreated occlusal disease may crack or chip a tooth, furthering the chances of developing an infection or dental abscess.
- Strain on the jaw joint may also lead to difficulty opening and closing the mouth, also known as TMJ disorder.
- Finally, bruxism, or teeth grinding, may develop as a result of occlusal issues, which also leads to damaged teeth and an increased likelihood of developing TMJ dysfunction.
What Treatment is Available for Occlusal Disease?
To address occlusal disease, we will first identify the factors behind your condition, and the extent of your tooth misalignment. In most cases, we can correct smile symmetry using the advanced Invisalign® system of clear braces, which utilize nearly-invisible plastic aligners instead of metal brackets and wires.
If your occlusal disease has led to TMJ disorder or bruxism (habitual teeth-grinding), then we may recommend a custom-designed oral appliance to stop grinding and/or relieve tension on your jaw’s joints. If your teeth have become chipped, worn, cracked, or broken, then treatment may also entail an appropriate restorative procedure to rebuild your healthy tooth structure, and your smile’s healthy appearance.
Call Downey Family & Cosmetic Dentistry Today
Dr. Hadis Reyhani, Dr. Ben Reyhani, and Dr. Pasha Hakimzadeh, DDS, provide a wealth of combined experience, along with innovative technology and personalized care, to help improve our patients’ dental health so they can enjoy smiling again. To schedule an appointment, please call Downey Family Cosmetic Dentistry today at 562-219-3454.