I have been practicing dentistry for many years so I have seen many Temporo-Mandibular Disorder (TMD) cases. I find that the more I learn, the more I need to learn. TMD is multi-faceted and incredibly challenging to treat. Many cases can be quite complex in nature, and each patient comes with their own unique challenges and limitations. Many of our patients come from all over the country, and are often referred by other health care professionals after trying and failing at many forms of therapy, modality and diagnosis. When I work with a TMD patient, it requires a whole different level of precision, patience, and skill. Many TMD patients have emotional and psychological issues as a result of being in chronic pain for many years and may be unaware of their own limitations, yet expect instant results.
TMD Treatment Requires Time & Patience
Generally, the TMD patients who follow our treatment protocols respond quickly and experience symptom resolution or improvement. There are a few who respond slower, though still see great results when it comes to pain elimination, depending on their compliance and willingness to follow treatment recommendations. When patients have psychological and emotional issues along with structural issues, resulting from long-term trauma or pain, these can get more complicated as they require therapy and other intervention in order to resolve these issues. Some patients are too anxious and/or have unrealistic expectations about their problems and we can not meet their time frame they allow in order to be treated.
TMD Treatment Cost
Fees can vary greatly in TMD cases. Fees are commensurate based on time involved, effort, complexity, detail, and patient limitations. Some people require move visits than others. Some require longer appointments due to a variety of different factors. Some ask a lot of in-depth questions and want detailed answers (requiring a lot more time to discuss and explain) or require lengthy written communication or repeat follow-up or explanations. Overall, many cases are typically very complicated in nature and require a lot of time and focus to address and resolve their issues.
Phase II can pose additional challenges, especially due to complex orthopedics in order to transition their bites to the final optimized position, while others may require restorative restorations including full mouth rehabilitation. Others may need a combination of multiple treatment modalities in order to control and maintain the ideal bite. In addition, some TMD patients are missing some teeth, or have had previous surgeries, or various forms of joint derangement problems, locked joints, discs that have not been recaptured, medication dependance, all making their problems much more complicated than those who do not have these additional challenges. Some patients are clenchers, have postural problems or have CNS issues, and all these take more time. Some people are ‘wide-goal post’ type personalities (not as detail oriented or narrowed when it comes to tolerance) while others are ‘narrow-goal post’ (super narrow and detail/lack of variation in tolerance). No case is ever the same.
It’s One Case at a Time
We do our best to help our patients be free of pain or other dental issues. And nothing lasts forever. Even God has not been able to make your body or your teeth last forever, so it’s unreasonable to expect your dentist to do so. Everything breaks down over time and requires maintenance along the way. But this is my passion and my constant and never-ending desire to improve, heal, and focus my skills and talent on a very challenging and niche area of the body – the jaw joint.
About Dr. Agatha Bis
Oakville Dentist, Dr. Agatha Bis, DDS received her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from University of Western Ontario in 1996. With over 25 years of
clinical experience creating beautiful and healthy smiles, Dr. Bis offers a unique approach to dentistry, blending modern dental practices with the
use of digital technology to optimize health outcomes. With thousands of hours in post-graduate training, her unique focus and expertise in treating TMD and providing options in restorative dentistry, along with digital technology has led to helping numerous patients resolve chronic and debilitating dental challenges.