JawSense, NTU to develop smart headband to combat bruxism

Medical technology startup Jawsense and Nottingham Trent University’s (NTU) Medical Technologies Innovation Facility will work together to develop a smart headband that aims to detect and reduce bruxism and temporomandibular disorders (TMDs).  

This smart device will use advanced sensors and algorithms to recognize teeth grinding and send gentle vibrations to help relax the jaw muscles and make the wearer aware of the behavior. Increased awareness is expected to lead people to gradually learn to consciously relax their jaws and stop clenching and grinding their teeth, according to a press release dated January 3 from the university.

The JawSense smart headband. Image courtesy of JawSense.The JawSense smart headband. Image courtesy of JawSense.

“By making people aware of their behavior we can help them to change it,” Bas Borgdorff, CEO and founder of London-based JawSense, said in the release.  

The headband will be designed to diagnose and treat bruxism both while the wearer is awake and asleep by using personalized feedback. Jaw activity data will be shared in a mobile app for collaboration with healthcare providers, according to the release.  

Innovate U.K.’s Advancing Precision Medicine program has provided 1 million pounds ($1.2 million U.S.) to fund the project, which will be used to refine the prototype and conduct a phase I clinical trial in the hopes of launching the headband. The goal is to have a subsequent phase II trial followed by National Health Service procurement. 

“The health service has been grappling with these disorders, which are not only complex to diagnose but also lack licensed treatment which tackle the root cause,” Philippe Wilson, PhD, professor of One Health at NTU and principal investigator in the Medical Technologies Innovation Facility, said in the release. “This would be a truly effective and data-driven treatment which will have a profound and lasting impact on public health and well-being.”  

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