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Design Features

The TMJ Appliance® is a prefabricated and specifically designed (using CAD) for immediate, initial TMD treatment.

The TMJ Appliance®is made from a silicone material in the shape of an ideal arch, with flexibility to adapt to wide and narrow arches. No impressions required, no molding and minimal adjusting (distal end trimming with scissors is required with narrow arches). One size for all adult mouths. Sounds impossible, but you will find only the occasional patient who cannot be accommodated. It does not need to "fit" in the conventional sense.

For the busy practitioner that means you can offer immediate treatment at the first consultation visit in effectively zero chair time. When you don't have time to make you own splint, and want something that really works. It even comes with instructions for the patient on how to use it!

No boiling water, no impressions and true immediate application. The patient can be in and out in a few minutes with a definitive initial treatment. The design features premolded into the TMJ Appliance® are specific for the role of initial symptom relief.

Joint decompression and limitation of function

Physical Therapists in particular advocate that initial treatment for any inflamed joint should be to decrease joint inflammation and muscle pain by joint decompression and limitation of function. The TMJ Appliance® uses these principles to gain effective symptom relief.

A Pivotal Splint

The TMJ Appliance® has an aerofoil shaped base which is 4.5 mm thick in cross section over the first molar area, tapering forward and back to 2mm and 2.5mm respectively. This gives an effective pivotal splint to the majority of patients with complete posterior dentition. Added to this, the material used, which is a medical silicone, is quite different in characteristics of the common vacuum formed splints, which are quite unsuitable for treating TM disorders, but OK for your average football player. This silicone material is considerably softer and more durable. In combination with the design, correction of mandibular position and lateral (para)function is achieved.

The vertical component of the the TMJ Appliance® is an important feature for its effectiveness.

The double mouthguard effect limits lateral movement and the tongue guard stops parafunctional habits (like tongue thrusting) when in place. Willis DDS MSc in AM J Orthod Dentofac Orthop 1995;107:229-34 noted in this study of splint design “that a design splint incorporating extreme canine guidance with limited lateral movement may be effective in the treatment of temporo-mandibular dysfunction (TMD) symptoms”. The lack of scientific support for other splint designs was also noted in the study.

Sterilization

Sterilization has been in the spotlight in dentistry throughout the 1990's. Some patients complain about the build-up of plaque, bacteria and unpleasant smell in acrylic splints which cannot be effectively sterilised without exposing the patient to chemicals of potential harm to them. A feature of the TMJ Appliance® is that it can be sterilised by boiling or autoclaving. It also allows it to be a reusable diagnostic splint, although this is not advised.

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Patent No. 5 259 762