TMJ Disorders – Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

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Things You Need to Know About TMJ Treatment & Disorders

TMJ is probably a term you’ve never heard unless you are experiencing a problem with it. The TMJ is one of the most frequently used bones in the body, which puts it under stress. If you experience debilitating dental pain, you can book a meeting with your regular dentist so that he can help you get quick relief from it. However, it is not that simple with TMJ pain. If you are reading this, you or your loved one is probably going through some pains with the small jaw joint. Read on to learn about the causes of TMJ, its diagnosis, treatment, and management.

What Is TMJ?

TMJ stands for the temporomandibular joints. These two joints (temporal bone and lower jaw) rotate and slide in front of each ear, connecting the skull to the lower jaw. The temporal bone is the base and side of the skull. The TMJs are very complex joints. These joints with many muscles make it possible for the mandible to move forward and back, up and down, and side to side.

The proper alignment between the mandible and the joints encourages smooth muscle actions such as yawning, swallowing, chewing, and talking. When the ligament, muscles, jaw bone, disk, and temporal bone are not synchronized in movement or aligned, it can cause problems.

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, as many as 10 million Americans suffer from TMJ disorders. They are more common among women than men.

These disorders are treatable, but they have many different possible causes. This can make diagnosis difficult.

Temporomandibular Joints Disorder

TMJ disorder is a disorder that happens to the muscles of the jaw, the temporomandibular joints, and the nerves of the face. When the complex system of joints, bones, and muscles can’t harmoniously work together, it results in temporomandibular disorder.

Causes of TMJ Disorder

TMJ Disorder is not clear, but an excessive strain on the joints of the jaw and the muscle group in control of our speech, swallowing, chewing, and other lower jaw-related activities can result in TMJ disorders. The strain can result from bruxism, the involuntary, chronic grinding and clenching of the teeth. Trauma to the head, neck, or jaw may cause TMJ disorder. Displacement of the joint disks of the jaw and Arthritis can also result in TMJ disorder.

TMJ disorder symptoms vary depending on the severity and cause of your condition. Pain in the jaw and surrounding muscles is the most common symptom of TMJ disorders.

  • Pain that can be felt in the face or neck
  • Stiffness in the jaw muscles
  • Jaw movement is restricted
  • Clenching of the jaw
  • TMJ site makes a clicking or popping sound
  • Dental problems, such as tooth deterioration
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ear)
  • Vertigo
  • Headaches
  • Shift in the jaw, altering the alignment of the upper and lower teeth (called malocclusion)

Temporomandibular Disorder Diagnosis

Tooth decay, gum disease, arthritis, and sinus problems have similar symptoms, so your dentist will check your medical history, ask about recent injuries, your current health conditions, and medications and perform a physical examination.

During the diagnosis of tmj disorders, the Dentist Burton MI will check for tenderness or pains in your jaw, listen for grating, clicks, or pop sounds as you move your jaw, and see if your jaw functions normally. He will also check for issues with your facial muscle and test your bite.

He may take X-rays of your face to see your teeth, jaw, and temporomandibular joints. Other tests such as CT to view the details of your joint bones and MRI to view your TMJ disc may also be conducted.

Treatment of TMJ Disorders

Treating issues associated with TMJ is not simple. However, most people from the 75% of the US population who experience TMJ disorder symptoms resolve it without treatment. The complexity of TMJ treatment requires the help of a TMJ Treatment Dentist. TMJ treatments vary in intensity, and the following are the different categories:

  1. Lifestyle Modification: Changing your habits can help you manage TMJ disorder. Avoid clenching or grinding your teeth, chewing gum, yawning too widely, and resting your chin in an uncomfortable position such as on your hand. Opt for soft foods, eliminate your stressors, and be mindfully active with relaxation techniques.
  2. Home Remedies: Apply an ice pack or a warm towel to the area on your face and do jaw stretches a few times each day. Using a splint all the time and wearing a night guard can help you keep your upper and lower teeth apart to reduce the effects of grinding. You can replace missing teeth to balance your teeth’s biting surfaces.
  3. Therapy: Another effective way to relieve yourself from TMJ symptoms is to try alternative therapies. Counseling and mindfulness can reduce the stress that results in TMJ disorders. Other therapies that can also relieve you of TMJ pains are osteopathy, physical therapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic work.
  4. Medications: Medications can help you treat TMJ disorder at different severity levels of pain. A Burton Dentist will also prescribe over-the-counter painkillers for you. They work for TMJ pain relief long-term. Your dentist may later prescribe strong painkillers for the short term if over-the-counter ones are ineffective. Tricyclic antidepressants or muscle relaxants in low doses can help relieve bruxism, control muscle spasms and manage acute symptoms.
  5. Other TMJ Treatment and Surgery: Other treatment options include transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), ultrasound, trigger-point injections, radio wave therapy, and low-level laser therapy. If none of the treatments above works, then you may have to consider surgery, which is irreversible. Types of surgery for TMJ treatment include arthrocentesis, arthroscopy, and open-joint surgery. Different factors, such as the cause of your TMJ disorder, determine the surgical method that will work for you. Your Family Dentistry Burton MI will decide with you.

Getting a TMJ Treatment In Burton, MI

Treatment for TMJ disorders can range from self-care practices and other conservative, non-invasive therapies to injections and, in severe cases, surgery. A step-by-step treatment approach is usually recommended because non-invasive therapies are often effective at relieving the symptoms of TMD.

Skill and experience on the part of the dentist burton are critical for the proper diagnosis and treatment of TMD. If you experience any TMJ problems or symptoms and you live in or around Flushing please let us know. Give us a call today at (810) 744-2982 at schedule an appointment at Burton Family Dentristry

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