What is TMJ Disorder?
The Temporomandibular Joint (also called the TMJ) is a hinge that connects your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull. It allows you to move your jaw up and down as well as side to side.
TMJ Disorder (or TMD) occurs when there are issues with the jaw and the muscles in your face that cause symptoms like jaw pain, headaches and ringing in the ears. If left untreated, it can lead to chronic pain, bone loss, gum tissue changes and loose teeth.
Generally speaking, this disorder is caused by a misalignment of the teeth or jaw, but there are other potential factors that may contribute to its development in your smile including airway issues, genetics, injury and trauma to the jaw.
TMJ Disorder Treatment
At Downtown Dental, our dentists can test for, diagnose and provide a treatment plan for TMJ Disorder.
Treatment may include wearing a mouth guard for sleep to prevent clenching and grinding.
Your dentist may also recommend that you start using relaxation techniques, physical therapy or an electrical stimulus divide to help encourage the relaxation of your jaw and facial muscles.
In some instances, orthodontic treatment may be advised in order to correct misalignment issues that are at the root of the problem. Our dental team will work with you to create a treatment plan that is based on your specific needs.
TMJ Disorder Symptoms
TMJ Disorder can cause a host of painful symptoms because your compromised jaw muscles have to work extra hard to do their job. Common symptoms include:
- Headaches and migraines
- Teeth grinding (usually during sleep)
- Jaw, face and/or neck pain
- Ringing in the ears
If you are experiencing any symptoms, contact us for a proper diagnosis from a dentist.