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Unread February 6th, 2012, 03:36 AM   #1
StrayDog
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Default Dental Problems: Bite is off.

I thought hard about the title, and even though I settled on what you saw before clicking, I think it still does not cover the full extent of my current problem.

I have never worn braces. Though I don't have completely ugly teeth and am not shy to go full blown smile, they are not perfect. I have a canine that sticks out a bit and my bite has always been off. By off I mean I've always had a bit of an overbite, that's also a bit to the left.

About a month ago, I experienced this pain around my ear whenever chewing. I thought I was just grinding in my sleep again, so I didn't seek professional opinion. One side effect of this pain was that I could only comfortably clench my jaw by getting rid of the overbite - For a whole day, I would line up my incisors without the molars touching.

But now that my earache is gone, I could only now comfortably place my jaw in this position! I think I managed to move my incisors to the point that they won't allow me to clench my jaw with the molars touching! It's quite pronounced to the point that if I force it, I'm pushing my upper incisors outwards.

I'll go ask my dentist during my scheduled cleaning, but I thought I'd ask here if anyone's had this. It's really weird and uncomfortable. For the better part of the day, I feel like a slack jawed yokel, having to relax my jaw and avoiding closing at any cost - nevermind clenching - into what was my normal position prior to my earache.
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Unread February 6th, 2012, 03:37 AM   #2
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Default Re: Dental Problems: Bite is off.

PS:
I also just turned 30, so I think I'm past growing.
And because I can't really close my mouth to where my molars could touch, I feel it has affected my chewing. As in, I practically cant!
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Unread February 7th, 2012, 06:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Dental Problems: Bite is off.

I graduated dental assisting school in 2010. DEFINITELY talk to your dentist about both concerns (the teeth not lining up comfortably AND the clenching)

Teeth not lining up, even when you're being extremely careful, can lead to breaking or chipping a tooth against another, or chipping on dental work such as a filling and shattering it, it can cause TMJ problems (where your upper and lower jaw connect near your ear) etc. etc.. I'd definitely see if your dentist thinks braces would be a good choice for you, it's not so much a "looks" thing but a safety thing in that your teeth will function better and be more sound when aligned and you won't run that risk or annoyance of having to shift your jaw in other positions to accommodate for comfort or function.

Secondly about clenching your teeth. The human jaw can exert pressure of up to 900 pounds per square inch....its no wonder clenching hurts like a mo-fo (I used to do it too). It's hard to keep track of too because a lot of times you're doing it without even realizing it. Your dentist can make a night guard for you that can relieve the pressure caused by clenching.

This video here sums up a lot of what you're going through sounds like (lol please excuse the cheesy acting)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIQ2F...eature=related
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Unread February 7th, 2012, 10:16 PM   #4
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Default Re: Dental Problems: Bite is off.

Could be a TMJ issue. I have braces and my teeth are not lined up right now because my orthodontist is working on them, but I usually dont have any pain. You should get it checked out by your dentist. Could be something easily treatable.
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Unread February 8th, 2012, 12:07 PM   #5
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Default Re: Dental Problems: Bite is off.

I grind at night, it's a symptom of anxiety, and I was told to wear an NTI. They're expensive if you don't have dental insurance but necessary. If you can't get one, they make over-the-counter ones that aren't quite as good but will do. I'm not an authority on bruxism but one of the last times I saw my dentist, I asked if it looked like I had stopped grinding (because I felt my anxiety had cleared up a little) and the response was, "No, the teeth are still shiny". It sounds like it's just safer to wear the guard. Wearing one can also help re-align your teeth properly.

Of course, that doesn't mean you do it enough to wear one, this might be a totally useless post because if you go to the dentist regularly (not sure if you do or not), I imagine he would have noticed this himself already. =/
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Unread February 8th, 2012, 06:27 PM   #6
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Default Re: Dental Problems: Bite is off.

You have my sympathy! tooth pain is the worst. I'm currently dealing with a very painful temporary onlay. It definitely sounds like you need to see your dentist. You might be a good candidate for invisiline since you said your teeth aren't super bad. I hope you find some relief soon!
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