Do I Have TMJ Disorder? What Can I Do About It?
TMJ disorder (also known as “TMJD”) can make everyday things like eating, talking and even smiling painful to do. Symptoms often include:
- Pain around the ears
- Popping, clicking or locking of the jaw
- Pain opening and closing the mouth
- Muscle tension through the face, head, neck and shoulders
- Worn teeth and restorations
Developing TMJ may happen quickly due to an accident, or gradually progress over time. One of the most common causes of TMJ disorders is the misalignment of the teeth and jaws. When the teeth don’t fit together properly, your TMJ becomes compromised each time you bite or chew your food. Slowly, the joint begins to suffer the wear and tear that you might expect, creating abnormal movement, function and even pain. Orthodontic therapy can create a healthy tooth alignment relationship, returning normal function and reducing muscle strain.
Another reason some people develop TMJ disorders is due to bruxism, or chronic clenching and grinding. Most of the time, this is due to stress. Sometimes eliminating the stress isn’t an option, so it may be necessary to wear a guard or splint to prevent the muscles from being fully engaged.
Dr. C offers non-surgical TMJ therapies that can help you live pain-free and prevent broken, worn out teeth. If you think that you may have TMJ disorder but aren’t sure, he can give you an honest assessment of your jaw function.
Simply call us to schedule an exam!