Clinical Oral Physiology

The subject area deals with temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD), ie. orofacial pain, jaw joint problems and masticatory muscle genes, both as local diseases / disorders or in relation to general disorders. Clinical Oral Physiology teaches oral neurophysiology, oral function, jaw joint function and chewing muscle activity as well as occlusion and attrition and physiology and pathophysiology of the disorders. Patients are recruited primarily by referral from dentists in municipal and private practice, doctors and specialists.


The subject area conducts research-based teaching of dental students, theoretically and clinically. It builds on the course Oral Structure and Function and continues in connection with the Common Clinical course. The main content is local and general disorders with TMD as well as differential diagnoses. Impaired and restricted jaw function, altered occlusal conditions as well as facial pain and headaches can be signs of degenerative disorders of the jaw joint and myalgia of the masticatory muscles, which can be treated without major difficulties in general dental practice or municipal dental care. However, such symptoms may also be sequelae of or accompany a variety of other local or general disorders. It is therefore important to also have knowledge of differential diagnostic conditions, treatment and indication for referral to another instance.


The current research activity in the field is predominantly orofacial function in patients with degenerative neurological disorders, headaches and sleep disorders in an interdisciplinary setting.

The subject area performs special diagnostics of the chewing muscles (chewing function, bite force and electromyography) and collaborates with the neurology department, Bispebjerg Hospital on the investigation of certain neurological diseases.

Head of area/contact

Professor Merete Bakke

Clinical Oral Physiology is part of the Research section for Oral Health, Society and Technology