Whilst there are a few different kinds of splints you can have it will all depend on the condition or purpose for which you are treating. The aim and purpose of any splint therapy are to better manage TMJ and muscle pain, to increase jaw function that has often decreased over time, and to recapture the displaced disc.
The best allrounder splint and the most common and most effective splint is the fully protective occlusal splint (advanced Michigan splint) or relaxation splint.
The purpose of the fully protected occlusal splint is in the treatment of temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and myofascial pain dysfunction (MPD).
The aim of this splint is to eliminate the symptoms of occlusal imbalance or interference and reduce the tension of the chewing muscles and TMJ. Like when you go to bed at night you rest on a comfortable mattress and pillow, so too, does your jaw.
Repositing splints or, protrusive splints have an anterior shield which moves your lower jaw forward when closing. This type of splint is sometimes used for patients with clicking joints only (no facial, muscular or joint pain) as well as for patients with the head of the mandible (condyles) pushed dorsal (backward). For those with a TMJ imbalance, proponents of repositioning appliances maintain that the proper occlusal splint will reduce tension and is a popular treatment for head neck and facial pain.
A very rarely used type of splint is pivot splints. As they have only contacts either in the front or back, they should be worn only a short period of time. The pivot splint, if applied incorrectly, can do a lot of damage to your TMJ, that’s why it is not used very frequently today.
Combined splints usually are relaxation splints combined with orthodontic parts so the treatment of the TMJ will be at the same time as minor orthodontic treatment. It is a very rarely used splint. Different TMJ disorders (TMD) require different designs of occlusal splints and treatment regimens.
If you would like to know more please give us a call 07 3221 0443 or Contact Us and we will arrange a consultation at your convenience. Dr. Florian Mack looks forward to having the opportunity to speak with you in either practice in Brisbane City, Southport or Toowoomba.