TMJ Treatment

What Exactly Does TMJ Involve?

Technically known as temporomandibular joint disorder, TMJ is a painful condition where the jaw hinge or joint doesn’t work properly. Named multiple ways, from TMJ syndrome to TMD, the condition makes it painful or almost impossible to chew, talk, or generally move the jaw. The jaw hinge normally handles all movement of the mouth. Combining both sliding forward, backward, and sideways as well as up and down motion, the jaw hinge probably represents the most if not one of the most complex moving parts of the body. It affects everything from talking and eating to something as simple as yawning. However, when things are working properly, then TMJ can really be the culprit of a lot of discomfort and challenge for dentists.

What Triggers a TMJ Disorder Condition?

When the connection to the lower jaw stops working properly, TMJ typically sets in. The joint itself sits just before the ears and can be felt as the mouth moves.

A number of factors can contribute to TMJ, not the least of which is trauma. However, with over 10 million people in the U.S. suffering from the condition, a lot more than just a car accident or sports impact is the root of the problem. Women realize TMJ far more than men, and there are plenty of cases where TMJ disorder starts without any kind of direct cause being identified. Stress, pressure, impact, and even diet can influence the onset of TMJ.


Typical Signs and Symptoms of TMJ

While one item in particular doesn’t automatically mean a patient has TMJ disorder, multiple responses that agree probably trigger a dentist to take a closer look and confirm what’s really going on with the patient’s jaw.

The Dentist’s Approach to Treating TMJ

While no default solution exists to treat every TMJ disorder case, a number of different options are available that can positively help patients, reduce pain, and realign one’s bite into a proper position again. A physical realignment approach involves a splint or bite apparatus that custom-fits the patient and covers the upper teeth, somewhat like a mouthguard. This stops the grinding problem from occurring, takes the pressure and pushes the jaw back to a normal position.

Patients themselves can also apply home solutions to reduce jaw pain and inflammation as well, especially if the jaw muscle starts to contract in a spasm. Heat compresses, over-the-counter pain medicine, and muscle relaxants can help quite a bit.

Stress is a big contributor to stress and jaw clenching. Relaxation methods stop the trigger points of pressure and clenching and breathing exercises along with yoga go a long way towards helping people relax their face and cut the pain cycle from repeating itself.

Paradise Ridge Family Dentistry can help with establishing a TMJ treatment approach for you. Don’t just manage your pain. With our specialist dental team, we can get you back to where your body repairs itself again, versus just responding to pain. TMJ treatment partners you with our dentists in getting your health back on track. Call us at Paradise Ridge Dentistry to find out more.


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We will be glad to file a predetermination for you to verify coverage of any necessary dental treatment. We accept most PPO insurances.

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