What is TMJ?
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint that connects your skull and your lower jaw bone (the mandible). This joint helps perform many functional movements of the teeth and mouth like chewing and talking. If you experience pain while chewing you may be suffering from Temporomandibular Disorder, also called TMD.
What are the symptoms of TMD?
TMD presents itself with many different persistent symptoms. These symptoms include:
- Pain or discomfort related to chewing
- General pain or tenderness of the jaw
- Aching pain around one or both of your ears
- Facial pain
- A clicking jaw
- A jaw that gets stuck when open or closed
These symptoms are common indications for TMD, but they can also point to other health issues. Because of this, you should only be diagnosed with TMD by a professional.
How does Haid Dental work with TMD patients?
While hot and cold compresses and over-the-counter pain relievers can work for short term pain relief, we will work with you to evaluate behaviors that may be agitating your TMD symptoms. Some behavioral changes can help reduce pain and pressure in your TMJ joint. We can also create a night guard for you to help reduce bruxism (teeth grinding or clenching) and to help relax the jaw at night.
Another way to help reduce pain and discomfort is through the use of Botox. You may be familiar with Botox as an anti-wrinkle treatment, but it can also act as a muscle relaxant, which can help the muscles around your jaw relax. This flips the signal that tells your jaw muscles to contract. If your TMD is severe, surgery is an option. We’ll begin with behavioral changes and night guards before discussing the idea of surgery. If surgery is necessary, we will refer you to an accomplished TMJ surgeon to ensure that you’ll be in good hands.