Dentists and orthodontists who are not trained to treat dental forces create a greater opportunity for those who are.
In many cases, only a dental professional can help the estimated 80 million people suffering from painful symptoms caused by improper dental forces, called DENTOMANDIBULAR SENSORIMOTOR DYSFUNCTION (DMSD).
This disorder involves the temporomandibular joints (TMJs), masticatory musculature, jaw function, dental forces, and the common neurology of these structures and functions.
Journal of the American Dental Association reports:
“One in six patients visiting a general dentist had experienced orofacial pain during the past year. Dentoalveolar and musculoligamentous pains were the most prevalent types of pain. Pain in the muscles and temporomandibular joints was reported as frequently as that in the teeth and surrounding tissues in patients visiting general dentists.
Although the dental curriculum is concentrated on the diagnosis and management of pain and related conditions from teeth and surrounding tissues, it is imperative to include the training for other types of orofacial pain, particularly those from temporomandibular joint and musculoligamentous tissues.”
– JADA Cover story, October 2015, Volume 146, Issue 10, Pages 721-728
The American Dental Association declares that dentists are the:
“Doctors of oral health with expertise in not only treating teeth and gingival tissues, but also in caring for the muscles of the head, neck and jaw, and the nervous system of these areas. This care is now in the realm of oral systemic care and dentists can provide relief and therapy for pain symptoms associates with the greater head, neck, and dentofacial area.”
– American Dental Association, Dentists: Doctors of Oral Health http://www.ada.org/4504.aspx Accessed July 3, 2012