Occlusal Analysis and Adjustment


Occlusal analysis and adjustment is a safe and effective procedure commonly performed for patients whose bite is not properly aligned. Every time you close your mouth, the teeth on the top and the bottom of your arch should ideally make contact at the same time. When this does not occur, a patient is said to have a malocclusion, or improper bite.

Common causes of malocclusion include trauma, which can result in teeth that are off axis, which causes damage to surrounding tissue; prematurity, which occurs when opposing teeth make contact before the jaw shuts; interference, which occurs when the desired contact is not occurring between teeth; and disharmony, which occurs when opposing teeth surfaces are not properly aligned. One of the most frequently used methods for diagnosing and correcting an improper bite is occlusal analysis and adjustment.

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The Occlusal Analysis and Adjustment Procedure

An initial consultation and general examination will be necessary to determine if an occlusal analysis and adjustment is necessary. During this visit, we will review your health history, discuss your oral health concerns and goals, and examine your teeth, gums, and cheeks to determine your overall health and identify any underlying issues. Following this examination, we will explain available treatment options and answer any questions you have.

If the evaluation reveals that there are issues with your bite, there are several different methods to help you achieve proper occlusion. During this initial occlusal analysis, we will determine what is causing your bite to be incorrect by taking an impression of your bite and taking an X-ray if necessary. Often, malocclusion can be corrected simply be removing tiny layers of the teeth until the proper bite is achieved. This process is pain free and typically does not require the use of anesthesia.

Malocclusion may also be treatable by repairing teeth that are broken, cracked, or chipped. Malocclusion may also be corrected by the placement of a dental crown or dental filling, which can provide the tooth or teeth with the appropriate depth and shape to create a proper occlusion. Orthodontic devices are also commonly used to realign or reposition teeth, such as braces or Invisalign, although this treatment approach will take some time to complete. Custom made night guards or splints may also be recommended as part of the occlusal analysis and adjustment treatment process.

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TMJ Treatment

Though not always the case, the occlusal analysis and adjustment may also be performed along with prosthodontic reconstruction, and is commonly used to treat TMJ. If it is determined that malocclusion is the root cause of your TMJ, an occlusal adjustment will be necessary in addition to the following TMJ surgical treatment options:

  • Arthrocentesis: Fluids are irrigated through the joint using small needles to remove debris and inflammatory byproducts.
  • TMJ arthroscopy: Minimally invasive procedure used to determine the cause of TMJ through the insertion of a tiny tube that provides a close view of the jaw joint using a video lens and monitor. If the issue can be identified, the next step will involve removing the inflamed tissue, then rinsing the area, or realigning the jaw joint. Less invasive and fewer risks then open-joint surgery.
  • BOTOX/Corticosteroid Injections: Injecting BOTOX or a corticosteroid into the joint has successfully alleviated TMJ symptoms for some patients, though results vary.
  • Modified condylotomy: Surgical procedure that increases joint space to alleviate pain associated with TMJ or to correct locking.
  • Open-joint surgery: Open-joint surgery may be necessary if none of the previous TMJ treatment approaches are effective. The procedure involves making an incision to expose the jaw joint, after which the disc is replaced, repositioned, or repaired. This can be an effective treatment option, however there are increased risks, which is why it is commonly done as a last resort.

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Cost of Occlusal Analysis and Adjustment

The cost of an occlusal analysis and adjustment is contingent on a variety of factors, including the severity of your case, the number of teeth that are treated, whether dental sedation is used, and your dental insurance plan. At Anthem Periodontics and Dental Implants, we are committed to helping you maximize your insurance reimbursement so you can receive optimal care, which is why we will file your claim and handle your paperwork. Please be aware, though, that any remaining balance following coverage is your responsibility to cover. Though not required, we do offer a discount for patients who pay their bill in full (cash, check, or credit) prior to treatment.

Before scheduling your appointment for an occlusal adjustment and analysis, we will provide an estimated total cost and answer any questions you have concerning payment plan options, such as Care Credit and/or Lending Club, which offer interest-free payment plans for six-to-twelve-month periods.

For your convenience, we accept MasterCard, Visa, Discover, and American Express.

Schedule Your Appointment

At Anthem Periodontics and Dental Implants, we offer conservative treatment of gum disease and a comprehensive list of procedures, ranging from periodontal maintenance, diagnosis and treatment of oral pathology, dental implants, and/or cosmetic procedures to improve the aesthetic appearance of your smile. Our number one goal is to provide optimal care in a comfortable and relaxed environment. If you would like to learn more about occlusal analysis and adjustment, please refer to the overview provided below. To schedule an appointment for occlusal analysis and adjustment, contact our office at (702) 562-9024.