musculoskeletal system is governed by muscles, a sort of "rubber
bands" that, on stretching, keep our skeletal architecture together.
It is roughly like a present-day architectural cable structure.
relationship between bones is controlled by muscles and restricted
by the shape of the joint and by ligaments. We can decide to move
our arm in all directions (muscles), through rotation of the parts
(articulations) but we cannot exceed definite rotation angles (ligaments).
Each muscle can have a balanced arrangement with others and be supported
and assisted in its work (synergism) or be controlled and limited
(antagonism). This complex system allows us, whenever necessary,
to be very potent or very subtle with exceptional management mechanisms
The mandible is suspended below the maxilla, while being attached
to the os hyoideum, so that each movement is achieved in such synergy
and antagonism as to give us a dental accuracy of response of about
4 micron! We can crush a walnut shell, dress hides with our teeth
or tear a piece of fabric, whereas we can cut a cotton thread, chew
a salad leaf and feel - to our great discomfort - a hair between
our teeth! No wonder that such a complex and subtle system may be
Adjustment and re-programming of this complex mechanism is provided
by swallowing. Whenever we swallow, we try to find a centric occlusion
of our teeth, followed by a momentary reflex contraction of the
muscles of mastication which allow us to swallow. And this occurs
each time we do it, 500 to 2000 times a day! If the occlusal plane
is deviated (eccentric) for whatever reason, for example because
of an abscess elongating our tooth and making it more sensitive,
we consequently program a new mandibular position preventing us
from bumping against it and seek new accommodation points to permit
deglutition. This may be due to eruption of a wisdom tooth, to a
cracked tooth or to the fact that our prosthesis is too high or
too low, of course, to the detriment of our muscular system, involving
a lack of balance associated with weariness of certain muscle groups,
especially those involved in maintaining a new "forced" position.
These are the causative factors of most gnathologic problems and
there are good chances for an effective treatment .