I have had braces, and I thought my teeth were aligned. However, my dentist stated that my bite was “off”. He offered to correct my bite with full restoration. I do not want to cap every tooth in my mouth. Granted I do have fillings in many of the teeth the bands for braces were placed on. I’m a 40-year-old professional and want the best option for my appearance within financial reason. I’ve been researching my options.
– A veterinarian in New York
Dr. Hall’s answer:
I am very suspicious of your treatment plan. A full mouth restoration based on a statement by the dentist that your bite is “off”? Such a radical treatment would be called for if there were major functional problems, but the complaint would originate from the patient, not by a simple statement of the bite being “off.” Almost everyone’s bite is “off” to one degree or another. It’s not clear what problem this dentist is proposing to solve. My own bite is “off,” and I don’t need any treatment for it.
TMJ disorder is a serious disorder. It can cause debilitating headaches, and premature wearing down of all your teeth. In some cases, the best treatment for that disorder is a full mouth reconstruction, which means putting crowns on all your teeth. But that is a very complex treatment, and a dentist needs considerable post-graduate education in TMJ treatment to do that successfully. And even for those elite dentists who have been trained for that treatment at a prestigious institute such as the Pankey Institute, or the newer Las Vegas Institute, they would first try removable splint therapy and test a new bite alignment to see if it solved the problem before committing the patient to a permanent bite re-alignment.
I’d recommend a second opinion. I’d recommend Dr. ( — ). He’s not a super artistic dentist like some of those in Manhattan, but he’s an excellent restorative dentist who is tuned into esthetics, and I believe he is a solid and ethical practitioner. I’d see what he says about your options.
– Dr. Hall
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