Movement disorders

Movement disorders treatment:

movement disorders

Parkinson’s disease occurs in conjunction with a broad spectrum of different types of movement disorders.  Rigidity, a common symptom of Parkinson’s disease, is considered to be a type of movement disorder. Also often found with Parkinson’s disease is dystonia, bradykinesia, gait disturbances, start hesitation,speech aphasia, and others.

Movement disorders as well as Parkinson’s responds to jaw alignment therapy in the majority of cases with substantial improvement in multiple aspects.  This phenomenon and multiple case histories have been presented at multiple dental pain and orthodontic symposiums.  Please see attached article for more detail on treatment of Parkinson’s with jaw orthopedics.  A good article is also available on treatment of tourettes (tourette pdf) with jaw orthopedics.

The mechanism by which jaw alignment impacts movement disorders is explained by obscure research showing that jaw alignment sensors (trigeminal proprioceptors) are a major influence on brain stem  (reticular formation) tonicity.  The reticular formation is the primary center of sensory integration, whose function is necessary for facilitation of movement.  When the bite is out of alignment, the jaw alignment sensors stimulate the reticular formation excessively, thus inhibiting the proper function of the reticular formation and interfering with smooth movement.

The developing understanding of movement disorders with regard to jaw alignment is that jaw alignment is likely to be a major factor in their manifestation for all types of movement disorders. Their is literature implicating bite misalignment in scoliosis, torticollis, as well as stuttering and dystonia.


4 Responses to Movement disorders

  1. Trish says:

    Is the NeuroMuscular Vertical Distractor the only orthotic device for movement disorders? How do I know which dentists have sufficient training to treat Parkinson’s? I don’t have pain, but many other symptoms which I believe could be lessened, especially tremors. Thanks

    • dwight says:

      Trish: The Vertical Distractor was developed in order to change the height of the appliance easily, because vertical is the biggest part of the defect typically. But any lower full coverage appliance will work though changing the height is more difficult. I find many of the dentists treating Parkinsons inept. They need to have very good TMJ skills, which means that they should have doing TMJ for many years and it be a major part of their practice.

  2. Judy Powers says:

    Hi Dr. Jennings,

    I was treated for 20 years by one the first neuromuscular dentists. When he retired, I experienced a series of events that have left me without lower 2nd molars and 1 upper first molar. My jaw veers to the right. Missing teeth is huge. If I was able to get an orthotic that didn’t hurt, could it take the proprioceptive place of teeth. Is it all about vertical dimension, or do missing roots play a role.



    • dwight says:

      You are right, posterior vertical support is vastly more important than proprioceptive input through teeth. Missing teeth doesn’t seem to be of much significance when the jaw is aligned. DR. J

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