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Off Bite after wisdom teeth extraction

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I had 3 wisdom teeth removed last October (2009). Since then my bite is off. It's enough to drive a person insane when the teeth don't match up properly! I explained to the dentist that something felt "wrong", like it's not my mouth but didn't know how to explain it then. The worst part is that my bite can change at any given time during the day. For instance, in the morning, only my very back molars may be able to touch (top and bottom) whereas later on, the whole left side (top and bottom) can rest together properly, but the right almost not at all. I have been a nail biter all my life (yes I know, Bad) and since the extraction, developed a new way to bite them as the right front top and bottom teeth, the ones I used to bite them with cannot meet at all. And since the extraction wake up from the sound of my teeth grinding and have bit my tongue and cheeks so many times during the night. I have even woken up to a quick and painful "bite", as if I had opened my mouth all the way and then slammed it shut as hard as possible.I tried a night guard but awoke with my bite EVEN worse. I am scared I am going to break my teeth and am constantly moving my jaw trying to find a comfortable way to close my mouth. I never had any dental problems before, not even a cavity. What is wrong with me??? I am traumatized now and scared to go to a dentist again.
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First Helper Jewel143
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replied July 20th, 2011
Just in case anyone has had the same problem, I figured an update was needed here, since it has been over a year with no replies.
I have a form of TMJ. 2 oral maxillofacial facial surgeons examined me, and were quick to refer me out to any random dentist to make me a bite guard. I finally took some good advice and went to see the University of Pittsburgh Dental School Residents...not so much for the residents learning dentistry but for the awesome dentists who supervise and teach them.
Yes, I have TMJ, possibly caused by the surgeon who removed my wisdoms. The rsident said this much, which I thought was probably the issue in the first place. In his defense I do have a VERY small mouth and it most likely wasn't his fault, other than the fact that when I told him something "felt wrong" 2 months after, he didn't even offer an x-ray. I was just told to talk to my dentist about any any dental issues as his job was done.

The attending(teacher) dentist said we don't know what caused it. But if anyone else experiences this I'll give you the answer you won't find anywhere on the internet....believe me,I have looked! Thanks so much to the 2 docs who sat with me for over an hour after closing time to explain my unique situation. They told me this:
Teeth have to meet. That's the way the natural mouth works. After wisdom teeth are extracted, the jaw gets confused because where the teeth used to meet was the position in which it (the jaw) used to rest. The muscles tense up and shift the jaw, attempting to find the resting place it once had. Within a few days, the jaw adjusts and adapts. Nerves in the jaw realize that resting place no longer exists, the jaw muscles relax and once they are relaxed, a new bite is found. A new resting place for the jaw. THAT is what normally happens after wisdom extraction!
In some cases, however, the jaw does not recognize that the original bite is gone. Jaw muscles stay tense and keep trying to rest the jaw in the same place it used to. Since all of my wisdoms are gone, it can't. So all day long, my jaw is shifting in different ways in an attempt to force it's old bite. I have muscle spasms every couple of minutes...my top and bottom molars hit each other in a sideways direction. My tm joints are degenerating so the normal open/close function is not aligned anymore..it goes whatever way it wants, leading me to bite my tongue and sides of my mouth when I talk or eat. And sleeping is the hardest part because the jaw, like the rst of your body "rests" but since the jaw has no resting place, it slams and grinds trying to find a resting place all night long. It's a catch-22. If the jaw muscles would relax, they'd find a new bite...or if the old bite is found, the jaw muscles would relax. As the doc said, "the jaw muscles are running a marahon that they can't win."
I have never needed braces...never had a jaw injury... never even had a single cavity.
My last dentist told me I had perfect teeth and people pay thousands of dollars fora mouth like mine. Yet after a common procedure, I am forced to discuss the possibility of prothetic teeth or caps. If I can get it to relax, then I may be able to force it to recognize a new bite.

Just thought that might help someone in need.
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replied June 6th, 2014
Same situation here; my bite was soo off after taking my wisdom teeth out. specially on one side of my mouth where i actually have a crown so i was very confused.I told my dentist and he tried to adjust it on the crown. I t helped a little bit, but i still feel weard.I cant even relax myself because is so unconfortable plus they had to do some big fillins after too aaggrr! Its been more than a month and my jaw cant find its bite yet. But thanks for sharing now i know im not the only one at least.
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replied April 25th, 2012
Hi jewel,
I find this really amazing because I am experiencing something similar (Not to that degree but to the point that I had to look up online). I had my wisdom teeth out last week, so I know my teeth need to adjust but it's been really painful. My bite feels off, and I am afraid I might need braces again. Me on the other hand, I have had tons of problems with my mouth... It's funny, I am in pittsburgh as well. I agree the doctors at Pitt know what they're doing. I might have to pay them a visit again.
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replied April 25th, 2012
Hi jewel,
I find this really amazing because I am experiencing something similar (Not to that degree but to the point that I had to look up online). I had my wisdom teeth out last week, so I know my teeth need to adjust but it's been really painful. My bite feels off, and I am afraid I might need braces again. Me on the other hand, I have had tons of problems with my mouth... It's funny, I am in pittsburgh as well. I agree the doctors at Pitt know what they're doing. I might have to pay them a visit again.
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replied August 20th, 2012
I'm also experiencing something similar, so I appreciate your post.

I can totally sympathize with what you were saying about nailbiting. I got all four wisdom teeth out one week ago today, and I can't bite my nails the way I used to. My jaw isn't really spasming as much as yours was, so I guess it's found its new bite (even though it still feels a little foreign). It's just very disconcerting. I've always had a crooked lower jaw, so my bite has been strange for my entire life. Now that it seems to have changed again, I'm kind of self-concious about it.

I'm still not really eating normal food yet (I'll have softer stuff like fish and pasta... I'm uncomfortable with the idea of disrupting the stitches), but I'm really worried that my teeth won't line up well enough to chew properly. With my crooked jaw, I've only really been able to chew on one side of my mouth anyway, so I'm nervous about it. Did your bite problems affect how you chewed food?

I'm also experiencing a bit of ache in the molars that used to be beside my wisdom teeth. Nothing too painful... they only really hurt when I put pressure on them. Has anyone had this problem?
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replied May 10th, 2013
jewel...did you ever get better? I'm going through the same thing but it just started. did your muscles every relax on their own?
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replied March 27th, 2014
Crooked jaw after wisdom teeth extraction.
its been 1 yr or so after my wisdom teeth surgery and the left side of my lower jaw is not aligned with the right side,im 17 now, when i was 14 both sides of jaws were aligned now they seem to be a little crooked, i still have a bit of pain on my left side, does anyone know if this is normal or not, i mean my teeth and everything match up, but the left side of my jaw seems to be a bit lower then the right.
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replied March 28th, 2014
It sound to me like your body is growing. The body changes, everything, every 7-9 years. I'm talking tastes, feel, sight, all of the sense, the whole 9-yards. It could be possible that you need braces, which wouldn't be bad, just costly, but it's a steep price to pay for your mouth to stop annoying you.

Your mouth and teeth are as important as your living, breathing heart, and I tell everyone that. Without your teeth, living would be beyond difficult. Not to mention each tooth has it's only blood flow, directly connected to your blood stream. Get an infection.. guess what. Your whole body will endure.

Anyway, I would most definitely consult your dentist, or a qualified one at that. Tell him/her exactly what you did on here, and let them know your discomfort. Tell them you had a perfect bite back in the day, and now it is not aligned, though you only ahd your wisdom teeth removed.

It is possible your teeth shifted after this long period, after getting your wisdom teeth removed, as those wisdom teeth probably kept your teeth in a good place. Now that they are gone, and it sounds like it's been a couple years, they have more room to freely move, and are adjusting.

Your mouth needs time to adjust, but you may need braces.

Definitive answer: Seek a qualified dentist who is a certified orthodontic technician. Any dentist can give you accurate information at this point, as long as they are certified.

Stay healthy, stay happy.

-John
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