In the medical and dental fields, there are two approaches, the treatment of symptoms, and the investigation of symptoms in order to find the root cause and solve the issue permanently. In the world of teeth and oral health, this latter side is known as functional dentistry. It’s about determining why and how a specific dental issue persists in order to find a more effective solution, instead of treating the symptoms and effects which can continue. Dental health isn’t just about teeth, it’s also about the underlying tissues and structures of the mouth like the gums and even the patient’s airway. We can’t fix a dental problem in isolation, because we know that in order for it to take place, there are perhaps several hidden factors that need to be resolved in order for the patient to truly achieve their goal.
The jaw, teeth, airway and sleep are all interconnected and we can’t look at them separately. It is all part of the same network and by taking the right approach, we can ensure all of these systems are functioning at the highest level for the overall health of the patient. A functional dentistry approach can help to uncover a variety of issues, and by taking a more holistic approach, we’re able to allow our patients to truly improve their dental health.
Solving Sleep Disorders, Teeth Grinding and TMJ Disorder
If a patient suffers from frequent jaw pain and headaches, instead of trying to address the headaches with pain management, functional dentistry would be interested in coming up with the root cause and consider a diagnosis like bruxism or TMJ disorder.
Many patients struggle with sleep disorders like sleep apnoea, and the use of a functional dentistry approach allows us to diagnose the issue and then help the patient by correcting the underlying issues like the airway, in order for the patient to resolve their sleep apnoea.
If the tooth is incurring massive damage, we would look further into habits like teeth grinding and clenching, as these might threaten the structural integrity of the jaw and teeth.
Delivering Personalised Care
It’s also important to take a personalised approach to dentistry because every patient is biochemically and anatomically unique. There is no one-size-fits-all to dentistry, we tailor our approach based on the underlying root causes and taking into account every aspect of your oral health. If an underlying issue is not dealt with at its root, the patient will continue to be plagued by it, and it might further damage at a later time. Any fixes that we make that don’t deal with the root cause are short-term solutions, and in order for a patient to truly have the quality of life they seek, we have to take our care further. This is what we aim to do here at Ironside Advanced Dental. Our friendly team will help you uncover what’s causing your dental woes, and together we can solve them. Talk to us today, and we can help you.