Neuromuscular dentistry is a specialized dental field that focuses on the relationship between your oral health, your general health and the complex network of nerves, muscles, joints and bones in the connective region between your skull and jaw.

More specifically, neuromuscular dentistry addresses the diagnosis and treatment of temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ or TMD), a progressively painful condition often caused by a misaligned jaw or bite condition. Brentwood neuromuscular dentist Dr. Ana Brightleaf has extensive experience assessing and treating this common yet often misdiagnosed condition.

The most widely reported symptom of TMJ/TMD is recurring, migraine-like headaches. These headaches are often accompanied by other symptoms, which may include:

  • Jaw and face pain
  • Neck, shoulder and back pain
  • Jaw clicking or popping
  • Jaw sticking or locking
  • Ringing in the ears or earaches
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands and fingers

Because many of these symptoms are associated with other ailments, physicians without experience in neuromuscular dentistry tend to misdiagnose TMJ/TMD. The cause of these symptoms is often a jaw alignment problem or bite condition, which places undue stress on the sensitive components within the area where your jaw connects to your skull.

There are a number of treatments to correct the source of your TMJ/TMD and relieve your discomfort. Dr. Brightleaf can recommend the best option for your individual needs. For more information about TMJ/TMD and neuromuscular dentistry, please see our Questions about TMJ page.

If you would like to learn more about TMJ/TMD treatment, please contact Brightleaf Cosmetic & Holistic Dentistry to schedule your consultation with Dr. Ana Brightleaf. We welcome patients from the Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades and Brentwood, California, areas.