Treating TMJ Disorder

Treating TMJ Disorder

by Natalie (SU)

Do I have TMJ Disorder?

 

During routine dental exams, your dentist will often check the alignment and health of the temporomandibular joint as part of your check-up. Here are some signs and symptoms of TMJ disorder (TMD):

·        Pain or soreness in the jaw

·        Tender or sore joints

·        An ache that does not radiate from a tooth

·        “Clicking” when opening and closing the jaw

·        Pain when chewing or biting down that is not from a specific tooth

 

Treating TMJ

TMJ disorder may not have an obvious cause. It can be hereditary, but environmental factors can also play a part. An auto accident or other traumatic injury to the head or jaw can cause TMJ. Missing teeth can also contribute to trouble with the jaw muscles and joints. Sometimes clenching or grinding teeth can play a role.

 

Some treatments that are effective for TMJ include:

·        NSAID medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen to reduce swelling and relieve pain

·        Cold compresses

·        Rest

·        Mouth guards that fit over the teeth

·        Physical therapy that includes exercises to strengthen jaw muscles

·        In rare cases, surgery may be necessary

 

For most people with TMJ disorder, the pain and discomfort are temporary. It may come and go when stress levels are high. In the case of chronic TMJ pain, there are effective treatment options to prevent TMJ from interfering with your regular activities.

 

TMJ can be complicated by dental problems, just as much as it can complicate dental health. A misaligned jaw can lead to chipped or broken teeth. It is important to see your dentist every six months to ensure that your teeth and jaw are healthy. Dr. Ari Binder of 360 Dental Group offers expert and caring dentistry in Eugene, Oregon. The office staff can help answer your questions and arrange for an appointment. Call (541) 689-1645 today.