Obstructive sleep apnea affects around 20 million Americans and can lead to hypertension, heart attack, stroke, depression, muscle pain, fibromyalgia, morning headaches, and excessive daytime sleepiness.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

SLEEP APNEA AND TMJ DISORDERS ARE CLOSELY RELATED.

TMJ DISORDERS AND SLEEP APNEA DISORDERS ARE CLOSELY RELATED. THE BITE CHANGES THAT OCCUR WITH ORAL APPLIANCE THERAPY CAN BE CONTROLLED WITH REGULAR EXERCISE IN THE MORNING (EXERCISES ARE USUALLY FOR A COUPLE OF MINUTES ONLY) BUT MANY PAIENTS DISCONTINUE THEIR EXERCISES. I BELIEVE THE PRIMARY REASON IS THAT THEY ARE MORE COMFORTABLE WITH THEIR MANDIBLE (LOWER JAW) IN A FORWARD POSITION.

THE ANTERIOR POSITION OF THE JAW IS USUALLY NOT A PROBLEM FOR THE JOINTS BUT CAN CAUSE BITE CHANGES.

NEUROMUSCULAR DENTISTRY IS A EXCELLENT MANNER TO HANDLE BITE CHANGES WHEN PATIENTS DO NOT WISH TO RETURN TO THEIR ORIGINAL PATHOLOGIC BITES.

I CALL THE BITES PATHOLOGICAL BECAUSE IT DOES NOT MAINTAIN AN INTACT AIRWAY. THESE PATIENTS FREQUENTLY HAVE A FORWARD HEAD POSTURE THAT IS AN ADAPTATION TO INCREASE THE AIRWAY WHEN WE ARE AWAKE. UNFORTUNATELY FORWARD HEAD POSTURE IS IMPLICATED IN HEAD AND NECK PAIN AS WELL AS LOW BACK PAIN. IT IS THE ELIMINATION OF PAIN THAT IS A FREQUENT REASON PATIENTS DO NOT OBJECT TO THE BITE CHANGES OR FAIL TO DO THE EXERCISES TO PREVENT THEM.

IF YOU HAVE ANY HEAD OR NECK PAIN PLEASE CHECK OUT MY OTHER SITE HTTP://WWW.IHATEHEADACHES.ORG WHICH IS AN EXCELLENT SITE TO LEARN HOW CHRONIC HEADACHES AND/OR MIGRAINES CAN BE TREATED AND/OR ELIMINATED WITH A DIAGNOSTIC NEUROMUSCULAR ORTHOTIC. WHEN THE ORTHOTIC RELIEVES THE PAIN LONG TERM MANAGEMENT CAN BE ADDRESSED.

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posted by Dr Shapira at 8:12 PM