What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and How Can it Be Treated?

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What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and How Can it Be Treated?

Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint that is located just below your ear and responsible for connecting your lower jaw to your upper skill. It is responsible for your mouth and jaw movements and allows you to speak and chew with ease. Just like any other joint in your body, the TMJ can become painful, injured, and dysfunctional.

When this happens, individuals require TMJ treatment in Legacy to alleviate their pain and restore their quality of life. At Township Dental Wellness, we are happy to help those with TMJ disorders find relief. Read on to learn more about the TMJ.

Symptoms of TMJ Disorders

Some symptoms of TMJ dysfunction and disorders involve facial pain and pain around the ear. Additional symptoms include a grinding, popping, or clicking sound with movement and tenderness upon palpation. Many individuals who require TMJ treatment near you also experience severe headaches, ear ringing and fullness, and tightness around their neck and jaw.

The best way to determine whether you have TMJ dysfunction is to visit a dentist in Legacy for a comprehensive evaluation of your oral tissues, jaw muscles, and joints. However, until you can get to a dental office, you can perform some simple tests on your own:

  • Place your fingers on the joints directly in front of your ears and open your mouth as wide as you can. If you feel popping or clicking, you may be dealing with a TMJ disorder.
  • Watch your mouth in the mirror when you open and close it. Does it move straight up and down or deviate one way or the other? If it is pulling to one side or the other, you may require TMJ treatment.

Options for Treatment

There are many different treatment options when it comes to TMJ disorders, and dysfunction and the best treatment for you will depend on the severity of your case. In mild cases, a dentist near you may suggest conservative treatment. This will include sticking to a soft food diet and avoiding activities that require a large amount of strain on the TMJ, such as singing, yelling, and yawning. They may also ask you to consider visiting a physiotherapist to help you learn techniques and stretches to relieve the strain on your jaw joints.

If it has been determined that your pain is caused by nighttime clenching and grinding, your dentist may provide you with a custom-designed nightguard. This will be placed over your upper arch of teeth to prevent you from grinding your teeth against each other and allow your jaw to get the rest it requires to function properly once again.

Your dentist may refer you to an oral maxillofacial specialist for further treatments in severe cases. These treatments may include surgery to realign your jaw and alleviate pressure on your jaw joints.

Visit Township Dental Wellness

If you have been dealing with persistent pain and discomfort and believe it may be due to TMJ dysfunction, please do not hesitate to reach out to our dedicated team of dental professionals at Township Dental Wellness. We are happy to provide you with a comprehensive oral examination to determine the extent of your TMJ disorder and create a personalized treatment plan to alleviate your pain and restore your quality of life.