Cranio-Mandibular Evaluation and

Bite Splint Therapy in the Restorative Practice


Designing an Occlusion - Where Do I Start? 

Presented by Dr. Gary DeWood
8:00 AM - 4:30 PM | Friday, September 22| Full Day Lecture| Subject Code: 180

Friday AM Course Description
Cranio - Mandibular Evaluation and Bite Splint Therapy in the Restorative Practice
The cranio-mandibular complex frequently presents the restorative dentist with challenges to predictable, long-lasting dental therapies. Thorough evaluation and understanding of the patient’s present condition will help the restorative dentist decide when appliance therapy is indicated, what it can tell him or her, and what outcome can be anticipated if occlusion is a primary factor.

Attendees will learn:

  • Functional anatomy of the cranio-mandibular system
  • Evaluation of joints, muscles, and teeth with a goal of determining if the patient is ready for your restorative dentistry
  • A system of diagnostic determination of design, expectations, and follow-up of individualized bite splints

Friday PM Course Description (Includes treatment planning participation exercises!)
Designing an Occlusion - Where Do I start?
Designing an occlusion requires a starting reference and a clear visualization of the desired outcome. What teeth contact, when do they contact, and for how long do they contact? The answers to these questions will depend on the patterns and habits exhibited by each patient. This program will discuss the various options and their application.

Attendees will learn:

  • Occlusal thought and practice history
  • Three reference positions used in dentistry
  • The skill of identifying when each is indicated and when it is not
  • How to utilize each of the three references in planning
  • Equilibration techniques for planning and therapy


About the Speaker

Gary DeWood, DDS is a full time member of the resident faculty at Spear Education. He serves as Executive Vice President for Spear Practice Solutions, the consulting arm of Spear Education, and has a part-time practice on the Spear Campus in addition to his full-time teaching duties with Spear.

Prior to teaching full-time, Dr. DeWood maintained a private restorative general practice. Thirty-plus (30+) years in general practice allows him to provide a unique perspective to the application of the dental principles taught at Spear in real-office settings. He has spent many years focused on diagnosing and treating functional occlusal problems and TMD.

Dr. DeWood completed of a General Practice Residency at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, Ohio, as well as The University of Florida Facial Pain Center mini-residency. In 2004, he earned an M.S. degree in Biomedical Sciences at The University of Toledo College of Medicine. Dr. DeWood holds or has held appointments as: Assistant Professor at The University of Toledo College of Medicine, Associate Professor at The University of Tennessee College of Dentistry, Clinical Director at The Pankey Institute, Director of Marketing and Publications at The Pankey Institute, President of The Seattle Institute, Adjunct Clinical Professor at Arizona School of Oral and Dental Health, and Executive Vice President for Curriculum and Clinical Education and Spear Education.