Does altering the occlusal vertical dimension produce temporomandibular disorders? A literature review

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60 Scopus citations


The purpose of this review was to present a comprehensive review of the scientific evidence available in the literature regarding the effect of altering the occlusal vertical dimens-ion (OVD) on producing temporomandibular disorders. The authors conducted a PubMed search with the following search terms 'temporoman-dibular disorders', 'occlusal vertical dimension', 'stomatognatic system', 'masticatory muscles' and 'skeletal muscle'. Bibliographies of all retrieved articles were consulted for additional publications. Hand-searched publications from 1938 were included. The literature review revealed a lack of well-designed studies. Traditional beliefs have been based on case reports and anecdotal opinions rather than on well-controlled clinical trials. The available evidence is weak and seems to indicate that the stomatognathic system has the ability to adapt rapidly to moderate changes in occlusal vertical dimension (OVD). Nevertheless, it should be taken into consideration that in some patients mild transient symptoms may occur, but they are most often self-limiting and without major consequence. In conclusion, there is no indication that permanent alteration in the OVD will produce long-lasting TMD symptoms. However, additional studies are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)875-882
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Oral Rehabilitation
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • Dental occlusion
  • Masticatory muscles and prosthetic dentistry
  • Stomatogna-thic system
  • Temporomandibular joint disorders
  • Vertical dimension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry (all)


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