You might think that your smile is beyond saving, but you’d be wrong. With a full mouth reconstruction, we can address virtually any set of dental problems to give you a healthy, attractive, functional smile again.
This is a complicated procedure, and success depends heavily on the expertise of your dentist. Leading dentist Dr. Kent E. White has the talent, training, and experience to perform successful full mouth reconstructions in Nashville. He is your best choice to design and execute a full mouth reconstruction because of his training in both cosmetic and neuromuscular dentistry.
If you are considering a full mouth reconstruction in Nashville, and want to talk to Dr. White about your options, please call (615) 383-6787 today for an appointment at the Center for Advanced Dentistry.
Why a Full Mouth Reconstruction
Sometimes it makes sense to treat just one tooth because that’s where the cause and effect of a problem can be found. If you have an individual cavity, we put a filling in that tooth, not a different tooth.
But sometimes the problems are related not to an individual tooth, but to your entire bite. In this case, restoring just one tooth at a time either won’t help the situation or might even make things worse. When that’s the case, we have to approach your mouth holistically and create a group of restorations that are designed to work together to restore your entire bite.
This requires an understanding of neuromuscular dentistry, how the teeth, bones, muscles, and joints all work together, and what constitutes a healthy bite as opposed to an imbalanced or even destructive one.
What Is a Collapsed Bite?
One of the reasons why we recommend a full mouth reconstruction is if you have a collapsed bite. Our teeth perform many crucial functions, such as biting, chewing, and speaking, but they are also an essential part of the structure of our face. They provide support for the lower third of the face and are critical for a healthy, youthful appearance. Proper position of the jaw also supports an open airway and a stable body core.
When several of your teeth become badly damaged, worn, or lost, your bite can no longer hold its position. Instead, the jaw moves into an unhealthy position that has less height than is ideal.
When your bite is collapsed, your face will have a collapsed appearance, too. Your mouth will fold inward, your cheeks will sag downward, and your jawline will weaken. You will see jowls and deep facial folds form around the mouth.
You will also experience functional problems. You will find it hard to chew, and chewing will often be painful, not only because of individually sensitive teeth, but also because chewing causes jaw pain in the joints, the muscles, or both.
You will also likely develop sleep apnea, and may even have breathing problems when you’re awake.
How We Perform a Full Mouth Reconstruction
The goal in a full mouth reconstruction is to establish a healthy bite. This may mean rebuilding the bite you had when you were younger, or it may mean building a bite like one you’ve never had. We will design your bite based on a determination of the natural, healthy position of your jaw joint.
To determine the optimal position of your jaw joint, we will use a variety of approaches. We will talk to you about what makes your jaw feel most comfortable. We will also use TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation), a kind of electric massage, to relax your muscles and help eliminate bad chewing habits you’ve developed to accommodate the collapsed bite. We will look at how different jaw positions affect your facial appearance.
We will also take objective measurements of your jaw muscles using the electromyograph in our K-7 system. This will show us the position that is most natural and comfortable for your muscles, and imaging of your jaw joint will confirm that this position isn’t compressing, stressing, or displacing the cushioning disk in your jaw joint.
Before performing your restorations, we may have you wear a bite splint to help establish your healthy jaw position and confirm that this position is comfortable over the long term.
Once we have established the optimal bite for you, we will design your restorations. This may mean treating your current teeth, even removing some of your remaining enamel. The new restorations will cover old, damaged teeth. They will also replace lost teeth, so that you’ll have a complete set of attractive teeth establishing a healthy, functional bite.
If you have lost all your teeth, we can establish a healthy bite using FOY ® Dentures, which use neuromuscular principles in their design.
We will confirm that your teeth are in a healthy bite position using our BioPak system. We will also confirm that your teeth are evenly distributing the load of the bite using our T-Scan system. The T-Scan is a digital bite measurement that shows us the exact forces on your teeth at all times, so we can know that your reconstructed bite will be stable.
Want to learn more about full mouth reconstruction, or how Dr. White’s neuromuscular expertise is vital to achieving success? Please call (615) 383-6787 today for an appointment at the Center for Advanced Dentistry.