Tourette’s and other movement disorders

Tourette’s and movement disorders of multiple types (Parkinson’s, Torticollis, scoliosis, gait disorders, etc.) have been reversed with cranio-mandibular alignment therapy.  This connection is still not known by many doctors seven years after the publication of the information.  This connection is currently being investigated(  The connection is often discounted by many doctors as they are often not aware of some very obscure neurology (jaw alignment sensors have massive representation in reticular formation (location of movement origination and sensory integration); see  In addition, cranio-mandibular dysfunction causes “substance P” levels to become elevated, a known modulator of movement (substance P lowers cell membrane potential, thus causing cells to fire too readily; see central sensitization).

Multiple articles have been published linking movement disorders to cranio-mandibular dysfunction:


Most all modern humans  have substantial cranio-mandibular dysfunction (all primitive humans bit tip-to-tip, most  modern humans have an overbite).  This dysfunction manifests in a wide assortment of disorders, Tourette’s being only one of them.  Many studies have shown that people with cranio-mandibular dysfunction have very high medical utilization rates (i.e.

Therapy entails using oral appliances to improve jaw function.  Functional tests, based on dental orthopedic principles are done (dysfunction not evident on x-rays) which illustrate the defects.  Appliances are modified and a adjusted till function is ideal and symptoms are resolved.  Typical treatment involves lower jaw advancement which necessitates molar eruption to stabilize.

TMJ twin block appliances

TMJ appliances used in Tourette’s treatment





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TMJ and systemic health: the missing link

The question is how can the bite possibly affect so many health conditions.  This is the response I sent today:

I think the clearest term to  use for what I am about to share is “cranio-mandibular orthopedics (CMO)”.  The main organization that is focused on this issue is International College of Cranio-mandibular Orthopedics (
headache treatmentThe effect of CMO on health has been known since the 1930’s at least (Willey Mayes, DDS Albuquerque, NM).  It is told by many that John F. Kennedy was helped immensely by Willey Mayes and Janet Travel, MD (trigger point therapy) and that he wore a splint for much of his life to address his back pain and other conditions.  There are many research articles showing that people with bite issues have very high medical utilization rates (7 in my files). (Curiously I have never heard a single person mention the idea of looking at the bite on patients having broad medical complaints)

It is my belief and clinical experience that the primary mechanism by which stressed bites impact health is by way of increased trigeminal nerve tonicity, which leads to elevated substance P (trigeminal nerve has on average 100 times more dense “C fibers” than any other nerve).  Other known mechanisms exist that could account for bite impact on health: jaw position influence on head posture, interaction of trigeminal nerve and upper cervical nerves (both go to same nucleus in brain (ie upper cervical is primary basis of chiropractic systemic theories), trigeminal vagal reflex, trigeminal vascular system (influence of trigeminal on brain blood flow), trigeminal reticulo thalamic track (ascending sensory signal modulated by trigeminal nerve=why bite the bullet works), trigeminal influence on reticular activating system (ADD, ADHD, sleep disturbances), trigeminal proprioceptors influence on sympathetic nucleus in brain (dysautonomia, anxiety disorders), second order trigeminal proprioceptors influence on reticular formation (impacts sensory processing=movement disorders, cognition, diabetes, hyper and hypo conditions==leads to loss of homeostasis).  There are more

But substance P is the main one: a compound that few doctors know about.  Discovered in 1931, and has been researched extensively since 1980.  It is in fact a neuropeptide, a type of neurotransmitter that does not have a reuptake mechanism.  So when secreted, in lingers in the body and has endocrine like effects.

Its primary effect is that it opens up cell membranes, leading to loss of cell potential.  This causes the cell to become hypersensitized (fibromyalgia, seizures,

hyperacusis, photophobia, etc.) This allows viruses to invade cells (HIV), bacteria (Lyme disease), and calcium influx (cancer, chronic fatigue), as well as the insides to leak out (inflammation, leaky gut).  The scarry thought here is that long term elevation may be a major factor in many types of cancer.Substance P is a known major modulator of bone metabolism (osteoporosis), stem cell differentiation (anemia, leukemia), neurocrine modulation (hypothyroidism, estrogen dominance, growth hormone imbalance),  and  movement modulation (tourettes, dystonia, parkinsons, tics, restless leg, gait disorders).  Substance P is a known major factor in drug addiction, alcoholism, depression, anxiety disorders, etc.  Substance P is known by researchers to be the primary mover in nausea, vomitting, migraine, asthma, allergies, and most skin disorders.  I have a patient with severe peanut allergy that I truly believe I can reverse by the time I have completed his treatment.

Conceptionally, in a simplistic model, substance P is the most primordial sensory system in the body, and all body functions rely on it foundationally.  So when its levels are off, most systems in the body go awry.  It impacts cell function dramatically, the primary functioning unit in the body.

Dwight Jennings, DDS
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TMJ controversy continues

The TMJ controversy continues to go on.  It is evidence as to the great lack of understanding amongst dentists as to what causes TMJ.

cda journal 8 14A recent article in the California Dental Association Journal: The Great TMJ Controversy ( cda journal august 2014; p519-572) is very well edited and educational.  I would particularly point readers to the two articles by Clifford Simmons and Prabu Raman as being reasonably correct.

The TMJ controversy continues and is not likely to subside for some time with such lack of training for dentists in dental school about dental orthopedics.  Most dentists still know only about occlusion, and are given no training in how to assess jaw alignment.  Jaw alignment has to do with an expansive model that incorporates muscle information (i.e. the muscles which posture the jaw have a very precise place in space that they want the jaw to be).

The TMJ controversy continues because most dentists don’t know the above facts.  And not knowing those facts causes the treatment of TMJ to be very muddled, imprecise, and often inadequate.

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Bite dysfunction causing cognitive impairment

Multiple recent case studies have reminded me of  how the bite can have a major influence on brain cognition.  Bite dysfunction, by multiple pathways, can cause total loss of cognition or cloudy thinking.  This effect is likely to be caused by way of reduced brain blood flow (trigeminal vascular system), glial activation (elevated substance P), trigeminal influence on reticular sensory integration,  altered brain neurotransmitters (elevated substance P), and other pathways.

There are likely many undiagnosed cases of bite dysfunction causing cognitive impairment.  In the recent cases that I have seen, the situation was present for many years prior to proper diagnosis.  Diagnosis is arrived at by understanding dental orthopedic principles and the neurological impact of disturbances within the trigeminal system.


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TMJ treatment: Orthodontics vs dental orthopedics


TMJ treatment: orthodontics vs dental orthopedics

It is embarrassing to myself and my profession that dentistry is so ill informed as to the difference between orthodontics and dental orthopedics.  Orthodontics is used to straighten teeth (typically done with braces).  Dental orthopedics treatment is done to shape the jaws and to align the upper and lower jaw bones to each other (dental orthopedics cannot be done with braces, typically done with appliances that contact closer to the gum level or with repositioning appliances that cover the top of the teeth).   TMJ is most often caused by a jaw misalignment, an orthopedic problem; one that cannot be solved with orthodontics!   Most of my patients with long term TMJ have submitted to orthodontic treatment (braces) in the past at the recommendation of well meaning dentists in an attempt to correct the TMJ dysfunction. It rarely is helpful in the least.

Patients present with dental orthopedic defects in any of three dimensions in any given dental arch, as well as frequent defects between the upper and lower dental arches.  Jaws can be too narrow, not long enough, and almost always not tall enough.  This causes broad  muscular and neurological dysfunction leading to a wide spectrum of disease conditions.

Orthodontics as it is primarily taught in the country, is designed to give you pretty teeth, not align your jaw.  In my opinion, this is due to the fact that orthodontists don’t understand the biomechanical principles of occlusion, nor do they take any functional tests to assess where the jaw posturing muscles want the jaw to be.  Orthodontists typically fail to diagnose and recognize orthopedic defects.  This leads to brutal therapies like extraction of bicuspids or orthognathic surgery.

And when orthodontists are in the process of doing orthodontics and encounter TMJ symptoms (headaches, facial pain, ear pain, jaw clicking, etc.) they typically continue with only braces in an effort to correct a dental orthopedic problem.  This is doomed to fail.  Braces move teeth, not jaws!! When orthodontist use elastics to move jaws (e.g. class II dental defect), they can be dentally successful, but rarely orthopedically successful (teeth can move without the jaw moving).

Once a dental orthopedic appliance locates the correct jaw to jaw relationship, then orthodontic techniques are often helpful to move the teeth so as to support the jaw in the new  position.  This protocol is poorly understood by dentists/orthodontists.  Dental orthopedic treatment should precede orthodontic treatment, though rarely done by orthodontists.

Most orthodontists are also confused about the difference between intra arch dental orthopedics vs inter arch dental orthopedics.  Intra arch dental orthopedics is used to develop the individual jaw bone (so as to accommodate all the teeth). Where as inter arch dental orthopedic techniques are used to align one jaw to the other (different appliances to accomplish different goals).

The very vast majority of orthodontists proceed with orthodontics without ever doing any functional tests to see if the jaw is out of alignment (most people are out of alignment).  Traditional orthodontic records are only static records of structure only!  It is necessary to take functional records (or do functional tests) to assess whether the jaw is aligned.  How to do functional tests and check jaw alignment is not taught in dental schools.

As you can see TMJ treatment: orthodontics vs dental orthopedics is a very confused area for dentistry and medicine.  Osteopathic medicine which often assesses cranial function  typically does not understand how to assess whether the jaw is aligned.  This leads to a lack of communication and under utilization of dental orthopedics in treating many health conditions.

For further insight into this difficult area see:



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Magnesium deficiency and TMJ

Magnesium Deficiency and TMJ

Medical research  is very clear that magnesium deficiency causes highly elevated substance P levels, but high substance p levels are also found with jaw misalignment.  When both conditions are present it could easily account for the generalized hypersensitivity, severe allergic responses, and sensory abnormalities often found with TMJ dysfunction.  Though in many cases the TMJ may be covert and not readily apparent to neither the patient or their dentist.

Magnesium deficiency is also found in a number of other illnesses including type 2 diabetes, fibromyalgia, asthma, heart disease, osteoporosis, migraine, premenstral syndrome, and restless leg syndrome.  Magnesium deficiency and TMJ in combination would only worsen any of the above illnesses.

Mental disorders, mood disorders, anxiety, TBI, and PTSD are all known to be affected by magnesium level in the brain.  Substance P levels can become dramatically elevated very rapidly in situations of acute stress.  When there is an overlayed bite problem causing further elevated substance P levels, it can prevent the brain from ever recovering.  The combination of magnesium deficiency and TMJ can condemn a person to lifelong dysfunction that would be hard to recognize by most medical practioners.

Magnesium is available in many forms. Recommended types include magnesium citrate, magnesium gluconate, and magnesium lactate, all of which are more easily absorbed into the body than other forms.  One should also take vitamin B6 as it determines how much magnesium is absorbed.  One might consider topical forms if they find too many side effects from oral supplementation.


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TMJ Treatment Bay Area and Substance P

TMJ Treatment Bay Area and substance P

Substance P measurement is an essential part of dental orthopedic treatment directed at resolving neurogenic inflammatory disorders.  It is the measurement of substance P that verifies that any treatment was effective, and to what extent it was effective. For TMJ treatment Bay Area our office is now starting to incorporate substance P testing routinely in many of our cases.

A  big problem for TMJ treatment Bay Area and substance P testing is that Quest Diagnostics has a major error in what they list as normal levels.  Our clinical cases are starting to provide us with a better idea of what is ideal levels for substance P.

Case treatment with other medical professionals continues to surprise me at the lack of knowledge about substance P, the pain neurotransmitter.  Doctors must spend at least 70% of their time treating pain, but their knowledge of the pain neurotransmitter is severely lacking.  This knowledge is important for them to make decisions about other conditions the patient may be experiencing.  The dental profession has failed to educate the medical community as to the influence of dental orthopedic defects on systemic substance P levels.

TMJ treatment Bay Area and substance P hopes to remedy some of these shortfalls and provide evidenced based data to provide insight into the cause of a number of associated medical pathologies.


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Cancer, Substance P, and your bite

Cancer, Substance P, and your bite

Note Substance P: the neurotransmitter for all pain signals to the brain. Substance P naturally becomes elevated with eating. Systemic levels are heavily influenced by jaw alignment (which is off in the vast majority of people). Substance P has two primary influences on the body: 1)primary mediator of inflammation 2) hypersensitizes all sensory neurons

Extensive medical literature exists about how substance P (see is a suspicious compound as to the cause of many types of cancer. I have known for decades that “precise dental orthopedic therapy” based on “biomechanical principles of occlusion” is highly effective at reducing substance P levels as dental orthopedic treatment is readily resolves many medical conditions associated with elevated substance P (see Substance P Cascade).

Over the past couple years I have been measuring substance P levels (Quest Diagnostics Note: their normal levels are severely off) on a number of cancer patients with jaw misalignment before and after precise dental orthopedic treatment.  The results have been nothing but dramatic.  The treatment has been able to reduce substance P levels by up to 90%.  The leukemia and lymphoma cases have responded dramatically over about a two month period of time.  Cervical cancer cases CA125 levels have dropped slowly over time to around 11.0. This is only preliminary results and will need to be tested further with a greater number of cases, but due to the non-invasive manner of the treatment, dental orthopedic therapy should be considered when faced with much greater invasive options.  Lowering substance p levels should also be the goal of medical treatment to prevent the recurrence of cancer.

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Headache Treatment Confusion

Headache Treatment Confusion:

Headache treatment confusion is all around us.  This  became very

headache treatment

Finding the solution to headaches

evident this week with a new patient that has gone to great lengths to find a solution for her constant headaches for the past 9 years.  The following is further evidence of this catastrophe-even when addressed by such a notable organization as the World Health Organization.

“A number of notable facts about headaches from the World Health Organization:

A minority of people with headache disorders worldwide are diagnosed appropriately by a health-care provider.  Headache has been underestimated, under-recognized and under-treated throughout the world. Headache disorders are associated with personal and societal burdens of pain, disability, damaged quality of life and financial cost. Globally, it has been estimated that prevalence among adults of current headache disorder (symptomatic at least once within the last year) is 47%. Headache disorders impose a recognizable burden on sufferers including sometimes substantial personal suffering, impaired quality of life and financial cost. Repeated headache attacks, and often the constant fear of the next one, damage family life, social life and employment.


Appropriate treatment of headache disorders requires professional training of health professionals, accurate diagnosis and recognition of the condition, appropriate treatment with cost-effective medications, simple lifestyle modifications, and patient education. The main classes of drugs to treat headache disorders include: analgesics, anti-emetics, anti-migraine medications, and prophylactic medications. However a large number of people with headache disorders are not diagnosed and treated.

WHO response

These evident burdens call for action. WHO recognizes this, and is a partner, with the non-governmental organization Lifting The Burden, in the Global Campaign against Headache. This initiative, began in 2004 and aims not only to raise awareness of headache disorders, but also, to improve the quality of headache care and access to it worldwide. WHO published the Atlas of headache disorders in 2011 describing the burden due to headache disorders and resources available to reduce them.”


Headache treatment confusion results from a lack of knowledge of the anatomy and  physiology of headaches. It is evident from the treatment approaches listed by the World Health Organization (only pharmacological), that the doctors advising them do not understand headache anatomy and physiology.  It is unlikely that they will change headache treatment confusion to any degree.

Headache treatment confusion will only be corrected when the contribution to jaw alignment (dental orthopedics) on head pain receptors becomes better recognized.


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Substance P and Oxygen- impact on cancer and brain health in San Francisco Bay Area

Substance P and Oxygen:

Substance P and oxygen are two of the most fundamental compounds necessary for proper function of the body.  Substance P is present in most tissues in the body, and perhaps the best way to view it is as the most primitive sensory system in the body.  As such, all other sensory systems are built on top of it, so when its levels go awry, so do other sensory systems (like endocrine, glucose, etc.).

Jaw misalignment causes substance P levels to become elevated throughout the entire body.  Excess levels of substance P causes all sensory neurons to become hyper sensitized, hence causing a loss in homeostasis, and subsequently   a wide spectrum of medical disorders.

What is little known is that substance P directly influences oxygen levels (see abstract below).  Substance P is known to be the primary regulator of the oxygen sensor component of the carotid body.  This has the potential in selected cases to seriously impact oxygen levels in all tissues, and most importantly in critical brain cells.  I n addition, substance P is a major mediator of inflammation.

Substance P has also been shown to have the ability to significantly increase mitochondrial activity level.  This is important in a number of illnesses: cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, autism, etc. (see abstract below).  These are major new insights supportive of the suspected link between dental orthopedic defects and cancer.


Peptides. 1989 Sep-Oct;10(5):1003-6.

Substance P and mitochondrial oxygen consumption: evidence for a direct intracellular role for the peptide.

Prabhakar NRRunold MKumar GKCherniack NSScarpa A.


Department of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106.


Substance P (SP), a member of the tachykinin group of peptides, has been shown to augment the sensory discharge of the carotid body, an oxygen sensing chemoreceptor. In this study we present evidence that the excitatory effect of SP, in part, could arise from a direct effect of the peptide on mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. Measurement of the partition coefficient of SP showed that the peptide has a relatively high apolar partition, which could be consistent with its distribution across lipid bilayers and in intracellular organelles. In addition, the effects of three concentrations of SP were tested on oxygen consumption of mitochondria isolated from rat hearts. The results showed that while the lower concentration of the peptide (0.5 microM) did not affect O2 consumption, higher concentrations, i.e., 1 and 2 microM, enhanced the rate of state 4 respiration by 52 and 64%, respectively. The rate of state 3 respiration, on the other hand, was unaltered with 0.5 and 1 microM, and was only slightly decreased with 2 microM of the peptide. The ADP:O ratio was unaffected by any concentrations of SP tested. The peptide-induced effect on state 4 respiration was even more pronounced with glutamate as a respiratory substrate and in presence of K+ in the medium. These results indicate that SP, in addition to its more accepted role as a neurotransmitter or modulator in the carotid body, may elicit intracellular response by interfering directly with oxidative phosphorylation.



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