A patient recently came into my office with severely worn-down teeth & an overbite. This was caused by several years’ worth of clenching & grinding. I informed her that she essentially had two choices for restorations. Either she can have several veneers for the ‘visible-when-smiling’ teeth in the front, or full crown restorations for just about the entire mouth.

It raises an important question. How does an individual choose the right dentist to treat her? Choosing the right dentist isn’t only about choosing the dentist who gives you the best price or even the whitest teeth on Day 1. It’s the one who takes all things into consideration including the health of your jaw joint. The importance of preserving an already-healthy bite or taking steps to achieve the ideal bite is of vital importance. Bioesthetic methods are low-maintenance, greatly cost-effective, and save a lot of headaches (literally). Because the initial care in case design will lead to longer lasting restorations

For patients whose bite needs slight adjustment, I usually end my treatment by designing a MAGO — a maxillary anterior guided orthotic. A MAGO is quite different than a mouthguard which is usually a rubber based separator that keeps you from grinding your teeth but does nothing for your poor overexerted jaw muscles.  The MAGO, on the other hand, will simultaneously protect the teeth from clenching/grinding at night (when we have the least control over our bruxing habits) and develop a healthy jaw alignment over time if worn consistently.

Dr. Boyajian, Los Angeles

www.dentalwellnessarts.com

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