TMJoint (TMJ) Disorder patients and Sleep Apnea Patients have a common developmental pathway. My practice focuses on improving physiological parameters and quality of life in adults from adolescence and throughout their life.
I want to clearly emphasize that while I work with adults the most important time to address these issues is in Children and Infants. I originally became involved in treating sleep disordered breathing because of my son, Billy. He was a poor sleeper and I frequently discussed his tonsils and airway with his pediatrician who was not concerned. At 5 years old my wife and I were told he had ADD / ADHD, that he could not start kindergarten and would need to be on Ritalin for life! I said I don’t think so! I took him to Rush Medical School Sleep Center and met with Dr Rosalind Cartwright and eventually had a sleep study done. Billy had severe sleep apnea! We took out tonsils and adenoids and orthopedically grew his mouth and a short heavy child on a 50% growth curve became tall and skinny on 90% growth curve, slept thru the night and became a straight A student eventually graduating college double major, double minor Magna cum Laude! Life Changing!
As a result I became a Visiting Assistant Professor doing research at Rush Medical School from 1985-1991 and an Assistant professor from 1998-2001. Addressing airway in developing children became a passion. I no longer treat young children because in Chicago there is an amazing pediatric dentist, Dr Kevin Boyd who is one of the top experts in the world in this field and certainly in the Midwest. When I treated my son I was very proud of myself but today I know it is better to treat as early as possible with many kids beginning treatment with Dr Boyd at 3 years old or younger. growing a bigger airway at this age when the brain is developing at its fastest rate is important. There are numerous benfits to this early therapy.
If I was not referring to Dr Boyd there are appliances from Vivos as well as other products to help develop the jaws. I also work with several Oral Myofunctional Therapists and Oral Myologists to teach proper oral habits to improve development both orthopedically and pneumopedically. Frequently, infants and young children are evaluated and treated for tongue and lip ties that impede natural development. The best developmental therapy for children is Breast feeding that naturally grows a better airway but tongue ties can prevent proper latching or result in severe pain for the nursing mother.
A Small Nasopharyngeal Airway, Forward Head Posture, Underdeveloped Maxillas and Retruded Mandibles are common in both groups. The small airway often is part of anxiety and stress disorders from autonomic dysfunction. This is a patient who was treated with a DNA Appliance. She continues to use the appliance at night because it makes her feel great. -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0H8YeS2pFt4
I have been utilizing Diagnostic Neuromuscular Orthotics to treat TMJ disorders, headaches, migraines and other pain issues for over 40 years and success rates are astronomical. Phase two treatment or long term stabilization can be problematic. There are many alternatives to phase two treatment.
- Dental Reconstruction with crowns, onlays or composite build ups.
- Long-term orthopedic appliances (orthotics)
- Gold Orthotics that can last a life-time.
- Addressing Sleep Disorders with Mandibular Advancement Devices (MAD) and/or CPAP
While all of these will address long-term stabilization they all have drawbacks. Phase 2 is moved into only after substantial improvement over an extended period of time.
I was recently asked by Dr David Singh the inventor of the DNA and RNA Appliances to teach an advanced course on utilizing DNA and RNA Appliances to finish TMJ and Sleep Apnea cases to doctors using his technology.
This patient wore an mRNA Appliance as phase two for TMJ Disorders and Sleep Apnea: -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rk_asW9I1aY
Airway appliances have been used by dentists for 40 years to temporarily open the airway during sleep. These are a comfortable alternative to CPAP machines with hoses and masks. 60% of patients reject CPAP completely with the most common complaint being “I HATE CPAP!” I heard this comment so often that I developed a website www.IHateCPAP.com All patients do not hape CPAP, in fact about 25% of patients love their CPAP and they do not understand why everyone does not love it as well.
This is a patient who had almost instant pain relief after wearing the DNA Appliance: