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Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Find A TMJ Dentist: Who is The Academy of Applied Myofunctional Sciences and where do they fit in TMJ treatment?

There are several excellent ways to locate a TMJ Dentist.

There are several schools of thought in TMJ Dysfunction.  The Alliance of TMD Organizations represents all of the major groups who treat TMJ Disorders.

I am current the Chair, Alliance of TMD Organizations.  It represents groups with several schools of thought.

Personally, I would recommend starting with a Neuromuscular Dentist who is a member of ICCMO.  These doctors are dedicated to the neuromuscular concepts discussed throughout the I Hate Headaches website.

I also belong to the American Equilibration Society and the American Academy of Craniofacial pain, both groups have wonderful courses and I love seeing problems from all angles.  I find I learn more from people outside the primary focus in my practice.  The AES is primarily centered on Centric Relation as a starting point for treatment.  While I don't agree with Centric Relation as the best starting points there are excellent doctors who are well trained in treating TMJ disorders.   The AES puts on a fantastic yearly meeting but the underlying focus is CR as taught by Peter Dawson.  That will change gradually when Dr Dawson retires and leaves the field.  He is much less visible than in the past due to increasing age.  Centric Relation is losing popularity in the age of precise measurement.  The concept of CR has had at least 26 different definitions over the years.

The American Academy of Pain Management is no longer a member of the Alliance but dentists who are also Diplomats of the AAPM tend to be very knowledgable on medical aspects of pain.  The problem in recent years is the AAPM has moved further in the direction of medication as a primary treatment rather than correcting underlying pathology.

The Academy of Orofacial Pain takes this type of treatment to the extreme.  There is a tendency to ignore the physiology of the muscles, TMJoints and Occlusal factors.

The International Association of Physiologic Aesthetics also holds excellent meetings.  It tend toward being a user group of LVI, The Las Vegas Institute that teaches neuromuscular dentistry primarily for use in esthetic dentistry.  LVI teaches excellent cookbook neuromuscular dentistry but does not delve into the science like ICCMO  does.  My preference is find a neuromuscular dentist who belongs to IAPA and ICCMO.

All of the basic principles and top educators at LVI are ICCMO members.  LVI recruited from ICCMO specifically due to their excellence in Neuromuscular Dentistry.  Many ICCMO doctors, myself included went to LVI to increase efficiency in reconstructive dentistry.

The Kois Center and Dr John Kois are similar to LVI in teaching his version of Centric Relation as a way to reconstruct patients.  Interesting, is that while he calls it CR it is actually very very similar to the neuromuscular position.   Dr Kois give excellent courses on technical aspects of dentistry.  

There are other groups teaching Neuromuscular Dentistry.  OcclusionConnections is one such group, its founder learned neuromuscular dentistry at ICCMO and later taught at LVI before going on his own.  Clayton teaches his form of neuromuscular dentistry and I again suggest seeing doctors who also belong to ICCMO.

Ther are other groups who belong to the TMD Alliance including Sacro Occipital Technique Organization or SOTO an excellent Chiropractic group very interested in TMJ treatment as part of whole body biomechanics, Tennessee Cranio and The International Association for Orthodontics who teach functional orthodontics to create healthy physiology and TMJoints.

The newest member is the Academy of Applied Myofunctional Sciences. Their first meeting is September 9-13.  I have been very impressed with their organization and I am enjoying the meeting.  I really belong to too many organizations but feel this is one more I must join not because of the work with adult TMJ patients but because of their commitment to grow healthy children into healthy adults without TMJ, sleep or breathing problems.  I expect great good to come from their efforts and I am proud to be at their first meeting.

Myofuntional Therapists work with patients oral habits and oral function and treat patients by correcting pathological patters.  regardless of which doctors are treating you Myofunctional Therapy can help the process.

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posted by Dr Shapira at 6:50 PM

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