Are you experiencing pain?
Contact : (607) 748-4151 Fax: (607) 484-0061
Back by popular demand! FREE Sleep Lecture: Treating Sleep Disorders with Dental Appliances. Saturday April 6th at 9:30am at the Hampton Inn and Suites, Vestal NY. We will discuss using dental appliances for patients who snore, are diagnosed with mild to moderate sleep apnea, and for those people who are CPAP intolerant.
Find out why treating sleep apnea is important to your overall health and well being. Make your reservation today
by calling 607 748-4151 as space is limited.
Do you experience headaches, ear clicking, popping, ringing or pressure, dizziness, jaw pain, jaw locking, limited opening or movement of the jaw, clenching, grinding, broken or worn teeth? You may be one of the 60 million North Americans affected by Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD). A recent study revealed that 53% of people with TMD suffered some level of depression, while 22% had symptoms of fatigue and/or insomnia due to disrupted sleep patterns.
What and where are the TMJ’s?
The Temporomandibular joints (TMJ’s) are located on each side of the face near the ears where the lower jawbone (mandible) joins the temporal bone of your skull. These are the only joints in the body that are required to operate simultaneously. Like every joint, they are a ball and socket joint. The ball is the part of the lower jaw and the socket is part of the skull. The lower jaw is connected to your skull by muscles, and the blood supply and nerves are located at the back of each socket. For this system of joints and nerves to be healthy and painless, the ball needs to be located in the centre of the socket.
What is TMD (Temporomandibular Dysfunction) and what causes it?
TMD is not one disorder, but a group of conditions, often painful, that occur when chewing muscles and jaw joints do not work together correctly. The most common cause of jaw related problems is a bad (misaligned) bite. That being said, TMD may also be caused by pain somewhere else in your body. For example, you may have pain in your hip causing you to subconsciously clench your teeth and disrupt the alignment of your teeth. This clenching results in jaw pain (TMD). Your jaw pain (TMD) is now secondary pain. If your jaw pain is treated with some level of relief but the primary cause (the hip) is not addressed, the jaw pain can, and probably will, return. Your teeth must meet over 2000 times a day/ night. If your bite is unbalanced due to misaligned teeth, we also know that the jaw joints (TMJ’s – Temporomandibular Joints) are out of alignment usually due to the lower jaw being pushed back (retrognathic position). As a result, the muscles are stretched and must work harder as they attempt to compensate for these misalignments. The blood supply and nerves are now feeling the pressure at the back of the socket, and this muscle tension becomes pain spreading around your ears to your head, neck, shoulders and back. This Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction
What is it and how is it treated?
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Sleep Disorders and Your Health…..The Critical Connection
Do you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep?
Do you wake up several times during the night?
Do you snore?
Do you take OTC or prescription drugs for headaches?
Do you clench or grind your teeth at night? How about during the day?
If you have answered yes to these questions, you may have a sleep disorder.
Let’s first consider why getting good sleep is so important. Sleep is critical to your overall health, as the light and dark cycles turn hormone production on and off, and activate the immune system. Nature dictates that we sleep during the dark and are awake during the light of day to optimize our systems. Man first extended the day using firelight, then electricity. Now people are out of sync with nature, and it has taken a serious toll on our health. People are sick, in part, because they are tired!
Light cycles drive internal systems in all animals, and humans are no different. Not only are hormones and immune systems impacted, but so are our regular functions, such as eating, etc. As a result, sleeping controls eating and stress; eating and stress in turn control reproduction; and all these together control aging. So in the end, not enough sleep has the ability to increase obesity, hunger, impotence, hypertension, and cancer.
Nature would have us sleep 4,370 hours out of a possible 8,760. Today we might sleep 2,555. In 1970, Americans devoted 27 hours/week to leisure. Today we might devote 15 hours/week. Bottom line, all work, no play, and no sleep have made Americans very sick.
A leading cause of sleep deprivation is sleep apnea, a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. Each episode, called an apnea, lasts long enough so that one or more breaths are missed, and such episodes occur repeatedly throughout sleep. This can either lead to wakefulness or feeling unrested and unrefreshed when the alarm clock goes off.
There are two types of sleep apnea: Central (neurological) and Obstructive (blocked airway). A dentist can only treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). The pathology of snoring is the same for OSA, however not all people who snore have sleep apnea, although it is the most noticeable symptom. The percentage a person snores is directly related to the prevalence of coronary disease. In other words, the more one snores, the greater the risk for stroke.
Reasons for airway obstruction leading to OSA include: large tonsils, underdeveloped upper jaw, tongue piercing, obesity, low palate, restricted tongue, craniofacial anomalies, and medications. Symptoms such as morning headaches, GERD, bruxism (grinding/clenching teeth), waking unrested, using OTC sleep aides, sore throat, and TMJ pain are all associated with sleep disorders. Besides macro trauma (accidents), sleep disorders are the primary cause of TMD (Temporal Mandibular Dysfunction).
Sleep Apnea is not just an adult issue; many children suffer and are unable to express themselves. It is critical to diagnose airway obstruction in children for many reasons, including, if they don’t sleep, they don’t secret the growth hormone. These children are also likely to have daytime cognitive and behavioral problems, including paying attention, aggression and hyperactivity, which can lead to problems at school.
If you suspect that you have a sleep disorder, a sleep study is the tool used for diagnosis. Once the diagnosis is confirmed—snoring, and/or mild to moderate Obstructive Sleep Apnea—Dr. Giordano can help. He will design a comfortable, removable oral appliance that will place the jaws in the best position to breath, and the most comfortable and healthy position for your Temporal Mandibular Joints (TMJ’s). These appliances are monitored by our take-home sleep study kit to ensure maximum benefit. In the past, the CPAP has been the only option given. Patient compliance for the CPAP can be an issue as it is loud and uncomfortable. Oral appliances are now a great choice for those who suffer from snoring and/or have mild to moderate OSA’s or have CPAP intolerance. If you think you suffer from OSA, call our office today and schedule an evaluation. It all boils down to this:
Sleep well – Live healthier – Live longer!
Dr. Giordano offers FREE Information/Screening Sessions. For more information, call 607-748-4151
Headaches are an accepted way of life for 45 million Americans according to the National Headache Foundation (NHF). Some people have suffered so long from headaches that they don’t even know what normal feels like.
A headache is a symptom of disease or a dysfunctional system in the body.
Sufferers begin a cycle of pain and frustration by first diagnosing themselves and then self-medicating. Because the medications treat the effects and not the cause, the cause continues to go undiagnosed and the headaches continue.
A large percentage of headaches ,incorrectly diagnosed as stress, sinus, and even migraines, are actually due to Temporomandibular Joint dysfunction syndrome (TMJ ds). TMJ ds refers to pain or dental symptoms caused by a conflict between the biting surfaces of the teeth and the jaw joints.
Most doctors are not trained to diagnose TMJ ds. The majority of people with head pain due to TMJ ds rarely get correctly diagnosed. Thus, people who suffer from head and neck pain can only get temporary relief. As a result, sufferers lose more than 157 million workdays a year and spend more than 4 billion annually for over-the-counter pain relievers.
It is not uncommon for people to go from doctor to chiropractor to physical therapist in search for a diagnosis and relief from their pain.
Headaches can be correctly diagnosed and treated by a dentist who is specially trained in TMJ disorders.
The first step to achieving a correct diagnosis iss to have an initial exam to determine if the headaches are from TMJ ds.
The second step is to do a comprehensive exam and complete records which include: Impressions, x-rays, photos, and thorough measurements.
Once records have been collected, the dentist can make an accurate diagnosis and design a treatment plan.