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CPD Approx.1:30 Hours

P037 Practical Occlusion and Parafunctional Control: Myth Busting Simplification

Speaker:Dr Barry Glassman

  • About This Course

For many years dentistry has been dominated by prevailing occlusal concepts that were initially presented in the 60’s by Ramjford and Ash. Despite the lack of evidence for the role of "interferences to centric" and “pterygoid spasms,” these concepts remain at the heart of our dental model. As a result, great confusion has led to the development of occlusal "camps” with belief systems dominating rather than science. This has led to controversy and the prevention of integration of critical muscle and joint concepts into general dentistry.


This course aims to outline the consequences of parafunction. The underlying causes of bruxism are discussed, and what distinguishes parafunction from forces of function is covered. How to arrive at an appropriate diagnosis leading to a conservative design, to control destructive forces is explained.


During this course learners will be able to:

  • Understand that not only occlusion matters but when and why it matters.
  • Understand to evaluate the design and mechanism of night guards prescribed for parafunctional control.
  • Explain why joints click, and when and how can they be treated conservatively.
  • Debunk many occlusal myths that have been arrived at empirically, solidified by confirmation bias, and do nothing but make dentistry more complicated than it need be.

Learning Outcomes

After completing this course the learner will gain an understanding of:

  • The consequences of parafunction including tooth wear, joint dysfunction and pain, headaches, and muscle pain.
  • The underlying causes of bruxism and distinguish the potentially destructive forces of parafunction as compared to forces of function.
  • How to analyse the patient's history and clinical examination to arrive at an appropriate diagnosis leading to a conservative design to control destructive forces and describe the role of CR and other "joint positions" in our patient's health and function.

GDC Development Outcomes

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