Pain Treatment

For a long time, CMD was misunderstood and was thought to be a dental problem caused by faulty contact between the teeth (malocclusion). People believed that they then had to find those places where the teeth do not fit together properly and eliminate the problem by using dental procedures. But today we know that teeth that do not fit together properly play little or no role in the emergence of CMD. In a big, population-based study at the University of Greifswald it was found that only 13% of CMD symptoms could be traced back to the way that the teeth actually make contact with one another.

At the same time it became clear that CMD symptoms only require treatment if they involve pain. It was then possible to reclassify CMD as a pain therapy problem rather than as a dental problem. Within the context of pain therapy, CMD belongs to the musculoskeletal pain category just like the much more common neck and back pain, and is therefore diagnosed and treated according to the same basic principles. Classifying CMD within pain medicine has led to a new, sensible perspective on CMD and has enabled more cost-effective and efficient treatment.

Within pain medicine simple, non-invasive and reversible forms of treatment are focused on during diagnostics and therapy. Therefore, the main part of pain diagnostics is a comprehensive and systematic pain-based patient history (anamnesis), whereas the most important tools in therapy are patient education, information and instructions for self-help. It’ s not the medical-technical aspect, which plays the main role in anamnesis as well as therapy, but the careful listening, inquiring, questioning and talking to the patients.