Definition of TMJ
Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction/Disorder (TMJ/TMD)
Your jaw has a small joint located where the lower jaw meets the skull. It is slightly in front of your ear and is called the Temporomandibular Joint or TMJ. This joint is what allows your jaw to move back and forth and up and down. Issues with this joint are quite common.
Signs Of A TMJ Disorder
Talk with the dentist if any of the following occur:
- Your jaw pops when you open and close your mouth
- You jaw clicks when you chew or yawn
- You grind your teeth at night
- You have tooth pain from grinding your teeth
- You find it difficult to open your mouth widely without pain
- You have pain in your TMJ (TMJ pain can be frequent or irregular, dull or sharp)
- You have headaches (These are caused by ligament and muscle strain)
- You have neck pain or pinched nerves (These are caused by ligament and muscle strain)
Our TMJ Dentists at Affordable Dentist Near Me can determine if you have a TMJ disorder and can provide you will treatments for fast relief.
At Affordable Dentist Near Me, we treat TMJ disorders one of three ways: exercises, mouth guards, and bite therapy.
Jaw Exercises: There are exercises you can do at home while looking in the mirror that will help your jaw relax and eliminate teeth clenching. The dentist can teach you these techniques to help align your jaw again.
Mouth Guards: A mouth guard is used to stop you from grinding your teeth. It also helps to reposition your jaw. Our guards are made from several different materials depending upon your specific issue.
Bite Therapy: Bite therapy is done in the office using specialized tools to measure bit pressure, correct alignment, and relieve pain.
Treating Your Temporomandibular Joint Disorder With Professional Treatments
Temporomandibular joint disorder, also known as TMJ, is a common problem that affects the jaw, jaw joint, and facial muscles surrounding the jaw. Specifically, the disorder targets the hinge joint connecting the lower jaw to the temporal skull bone, causing the muscles that function in the area to become painful, stiff, and difficult to use.
Luckily, you don’t have to settle for coping with the symptoms of TMJ if you currently suffer from the disorder. Instead, you can visit your dental professionals at Affordable Dentist Near Me and get the relief you deserve.
So, What Causes TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder doesn’t have one clear cause. However, there are many who believe that symptoms begin with issues from the muscles of the jaw or within the joint itself.
Of course, this means that there can be many actual causes for the disorder, including:
- Injury – Injuries directly to the jaw, TMJ, or muscles in the neck can cause the onset of TMJ disorder.
- Grinding or Cleaning Your Teeth – The pressure from doing so, especially over a long period of time, can cause serious issues.
- Stress – Significant stress can cause an individual to tighten their facial muscles or clench their teeth, causing TMJ disorder to develop.
- Illness – Certain illnesses, particularly osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, can cause TMJ disorder as well.
What Symptoms Are Associated With TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder typically occurs in individuals between the ages of 20 and 40 and can include several distinct symptoms, such as:
- Pain or Tenderness – This won’t be limited to the jaw or joint area. In fact, pain or tenderness can also occur in the face, neck, shoulders, or other areas surrounding the mouth.
- Symptoms Upon Opening the Mouth – Often, TMJ disorder causes limited mobility associated with clicking or popping noises upon opening or closing the mouth. As you can imagine, eating also becomes difficult.
- Pain and Discomfort – This can include tooth pain and headaches.