Body processes

Dynamic Occlusion – Function, Task & Diseases

Dynamic occlusion

Dentistry understands dynamic occlusion as the contacts of the teeth that come about through a movement of the lower jaw . Dentists diagnose the normative or deviating dynamic occlusion using a special film that takes the impression of the teeth. Disorders of the dynamic occlusion can cause complaints that can spread to the whole body and make it difficult for patients to localize the actual cause of their complaints.

What is dynamic occlusion?

Dynamic occlusion describes a specific type of tooth contact. The teeth of the upper jaw touch the teeth of the lower jaw. In the counterpart of dynamic occlusion, static occlusion, this tooth contact is due to the natural position of the jaw at rest. In contrast, dynamic occlusion is preceded by mandibular movement. It therefore does not represent a permanent state, but describes a temporary phenomenon.

Dentistry used to understand occlusion to mean only the position of the jaw in the final bite position; today, however, the term is used more generally by professionals. The final bite position or maximum intercuspation is the jaw position in which most of the teeth of the upper and lower jaw touch.

Function & task

Dynamic occlusion is of great importance so that the jaws and teeth can work properly. Dentistry refers to the points at which the teeth of the upper jaw touch the teeth of the lower jaw as occlusion points. Their number can differ between different individuals, as can their exact position: not every set of teeth has the same occlusion points without there necessarily being a fundamental disorder.A special occlusion foil helps to diagnose the occlusion . Other designations are test foil, articulation paper and contact foil. Manufacturers coat the thin occlusal foil with colored particles to make the results of the bite more visible. The diagnostician places the foil between the upper and lower jaw in the patient’s dentition and asks him to bite as usual. The occlusion foil holds the imprint of the teeth like carbon paper and thus makes the occlusion points visible.

There is disagreement within dentistry and dental technology as to what the optimal occlusion should look like. For example, experts have different opinions about how many occlusion points are optimal for dynamic occlusion.

The opposite of occlusion is nonocclusion , which is a malfunction of the jaw. A malposition of the teeth or jaw can also cause nonocclusion, as can disturbances in jaw movement in dynamic occlusion.

Dentistry requires the occlusion diagnostics described above in order to recognize and correctly treat complaints. Furthermore, the exact examination results play a role for dental technicians, who can, for example, make a prosthesis on the basis of this data .

Modern software uses the results of the diagnostics to create a virtual model that is also based on exemplary tooth models, which in dental jargon are called “library teeth”. In this way, the software adapts the desired aid or denture to the individual needs and measurements of the patient. In addition, the digital model calculates how static and dynamic occlusion will change as a result of using the denture. This gives dental technicians the opportunity to model the occlusion points.

Diseases & Ailments

Incorrect processes in connection with dynamic occlusion may lead to increased mechanical stress on the occlusal surfaces of the teeth. As a result, the teeth are under higher or uneven pressure or rub against each other unexpectedly. This can cause damage such as abrasions and cracks.Disorders of the dynamic occlusion can also manifest themselves in the form of a temporomandibular dysfunction (CMD). Craniomandibular dysfunction is a collective term for various disorders of the jaw joint and jaw muscles. A disturbance of the dynamic occlusion can also cause TMD.

TMD potentially causes a variety of ailments that may not be directly related to the jaw. Malpositions of the jaw or occlusion disorders cause fine adaptations throughout the body. For example, an oblique occlusal plane can cause the jaw muscles to contract unfavorably to avoid painful conditions. This may result in a changed head and neck posture, which can lead to slight misalignments in the shoulder and back area. In this way, many parts of the body appear to be affected by symptoms whose sole cause lies in a disturbed dynamic occlusion. Patients are therefore often unable to classify the symptoms correctly or attribute them to other causes.

Symptoms of TMD include pain and tightness in the jaw, face, shoulders, neck, and back, as well as migraines and other headaches . Tinnitus , eye and ENT complaints can also manifest themselves. Even digestive problems , sleep disorders and general disorders of the musculoskeletal system can possibly be traced back to CMD.

Critics complain about the inadequate training of dentists with regard to the craniomandibular dysfunction: The clinical picture is not sufficiently taken into account in medical training. As a result, there would be unnecessary misdiagnoses and the actual cause would too often remain untreated.

TMD has several treatment options when it occurs as a result of a dynamic occlusion disorder. These include orthodontic measures and prostheses. Overall, CMD is widespread with a frequency of about 8% in the general population. However, in only about 3% of cases does the craniomandibular dysfunction lead to symptoms that require treatment.

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Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.