TMJ Therapy Treatment at Dentalife

with an Alignment First Protocol

Your TMJ disorder and your misaligned bite (occlusion) are not isolated to your head and jaws. Accommodation to an imbalanced occlusion travels down as far as your feet. ¹

Studies show that the force and timing of your bite will alter how your head and neck align. ²⁻⁵ With this information we have developed an “Alignment First Protocol” to address all of the structural chain from teeth to toes.

TMJ Pain Affects the Entire Body

Your Occlusion, Your Bite

How you bite is important to the overall balance of your body. Alterations in your bite has effects that travel all the way down to your feet.¹⁻⁶

Hips, Back, Shoulders

We are all one active, kinetic body. Strain in one area affects all areas. To reduce strain in your bite we must look at hip, back and shoulder imbalance and strain. ¹ ⁷⁻⁸

Head and Neck

How your teeth bite affects your head and neck alignment and vice versa. Coordination between Health Care Providers can be key to effective management and reduction of structural stress. ¹ ³

TMJ Therapy Process

“Chronic Pain / TMD Dysfunction therapy requires time, patience, and care.”

We will discuss possible options to treat your TMJ Disorder (TMJD) after a thorough consultation. During the consultation, we may take a Cone Beam CAT Scan of your jaws, jaw joints, airway and neck to assist in any diagnosis or treatment options.


Functional Rebalance of Occlusion

A 1 hour appointment to improve the balance of your bite using a digital occlusion analysis system (called the T-scan) and micro-adjustments to begin to eliminate bite strain in clenching and chewing.


Diagnostic Testing

3 hour appointment to assess jaw and neck muscle activity, jaw movement, and joint function. Along with physiotherapy provided by Ultra Low Frequency T.E.N.S. a more healthy bite starting position can be determined.


Orthotic (TMJ Dental Appliance) Insertion

A 2 hour appointment that will balance your new orthotic to your bite. Includes 1 hour U.L.F. T.E.N.S. therapy and T-scan guided adjustments to a ‘Natural Fit’ dental orthotic.


Follow Up care

As your jaw structure begins heal and improve its function and balance, and as your posture improves, adjustments to your bite and/or your orthotic will be required to continue to provide balanced support.

Beyond The Bite

“Our goal is to provide strain reduction in the entire body in a coordinated protocol.”Dr. Curtis Westersund
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    Functional Rebalance

    Shaping and balancing your teeth with the biometric system ’T-Scan’ allows for initial strain reduction and can speed up following therapy.

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    Hips, Back, Feet

    Bio-mechanical therapy with accompanying exercises and stretches begins to regain structural balance and reduce muscle strain.

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    Head Neck Balance

    Determining and capturing a healthy balanced bite position for your new orthotic.

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    NUCCA Chiropractic Therapy

    Upper cervical alignment is key in our protocol of treating chronic pain. It is a gentle directed pressure to reduce twisting in the first two vertebrae. ¹⁰⁻¹²

    It is NOT the same as full spine chiropractic therapy but is often described as massage like vibrations behind the ear. NUCCA therapy is important to balancing your bite. Head and neck alignment and tooth contact are intimately connected.

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    Healing TMJ Disorder with a Dental Orthotic

    The dental TMJ appliance we use, The Natural Fit Orthotic™, rebalances the upper and lower jaw position to your improved posture.

    Your bite may be balanced on your natural teeth with the ‘Functional Rebalance’ but a dental orthotic will correct the discrepancy between your lower and upper jaws’ function. The orthotic is a simple, non-surgical method of balancing jaw function.

Fees and Payment Plans

A question often asked at our downtown Calgary dental clinic: “Does my Insurance company pay for TMD care?”

Dental benefits are determined by your employer. Often dental benefit packages purposely exclude TMD/TMJ therapy coverage.

Our Treatment Coordinator will help you find the best solution for you and your therapy.

Contact us about fees
TMJ services fee book

After you’re balanced

Once you have reached your best balanced posture and bite, it is up to you to continue with therapy as required.

This may mean choosing the correct health care provider in our team to see as you go about your life. Therapy costs will be discussed by each individual health care provider.

Schedule a Meet & Greet with Dr. Westersund ONLINE

If you have any questions about the TMJ therapy process, Dr. Westersund is now hosting Meet and Greets online. Click the button below to schedule.

Book Online Meet and Greet

1. Moon, H. Lee, Y. 2011. The Relationship Between Dental Occlusion/Temporomandibular Joint Status and General Body Health: Part 1. Dental Occlusion and TMJ Status Exert an Influence on General Body Health. Journal of alternative and complementary medicine. 17(11): 995–1000.

2.Koc D, Dogan A, Bek B. Bite Force and Influential Factors on Bite Force Measurements: A Literature Review. European Journal of Dentistry. 2010;4(2):223-232.

3.Curtis D. Westersund, Jeffrey Scholten & Raymond J. Turner.2017. Relationship between craniocervical orientation and center of force of occlusion in adults. CRANIO. 35(5):283-289

4. Ramirez-Yanez GO, Mehta L, Mehta NR. 2015.The effect of dental occlusal disturbances on the curvature of the vertebral spine in rats. Cranio. 2015 Jul;33(3):217-27.

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6.Karolina Walczyńska-Dragon, Stefan Baron, Aleksandra Nitecka-Buchta, and Ewaryst Tkacz. 2014.“Correlation between TMD and Cervical Spine Pain and Mobility: Is the Whole Body Balance TMJ Related?,” BioMed Research International. vol. 2014, Article ID 582414, 7 pages, 2014. doi:10.1155/2014/582414

7.Cuccia A, Caradonna C. The Relationship Between the Stomatognathic System and Body Posture.2009. Clinics (Sao Paulo, Brazil). 64(1):61-66. doi:10.1590/S1807-59322009000100011.

8.Yamaga T1, Yoshihara A, Ando Y, Yoshitake Y, Kimura Y, Shimada M, Nishimuta M, Miyazaki H. 2002. Relationship between dental occlusion and physical fitness in an elderly population. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 57(9):M616-20.

9.Haralur S, Al-Gadhaan S, Al-Qahtani A, Mossa A, Al-Shehri W, Addas M. 2014. Influence of Functional Head Postures on the Dynamic Functional Occlusal Parameters. Annals of Medical and Health Sciences Research.4(4):562-566. doi:10.4103/2141-9248.139319.

10.Palmer JP, Dickholtz MD. 2009. Improvement in radiographic measurements, posture, pain & quality of life in nonmigraine headache patients undergoing upper cervical chiropractic care: a retrospective practice based study. J Vert Sublux Res.1:1-11.

11.Rochester RP. 2009.Neck pain and disability outcomes following chiropractic upper cervical care: a retrospective case series. The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association.53(3):173-185.

12.Kerstein, R. B., Thumati, P., & Padmaja, S. (2013). Force Finishing and Centering to Balance a Removable Complete Denture Prosthesis Using the T-Scan III Computerized Occlusal Analysis System. The Journal of the Indian Prosthodontic Society, 13(3), 184–188.