Our experienced dentists at Preferred Family Dental can help patients suffering from TMJ Disorder. The temporomandibular joint connects the upper and lower jaw. When this joint is out of place, the jaws, teeth, and surrounding muscles cease to function fluidly, causing pain that can eventually move to other parts of the body. The temporomandibular joint, which is used whenever we speak or chew, is susceptible to displacement – a condition called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (also known as TMD). Symptoms of TMD include:
- Clicking or popping of the jaw
- Locking of the jaw
- Difficulties eating or talking
- Chronic facial pain
- Ringing in the ears
- Numbness in the arms and/or fingers
- Pain in the back, neck, or shoulders
Although the impact of TMD can be debilitating, patients are often unaware they are suffering from the condition due to the fact that the resulting pain can arise in a seemingly unrelated area of the body.
Causes of TMD
TMD can be caused by the overuse of the temporomandibular joint, though there are more complicated causes as well. Arthritis, bite misalignment, grinding or clenching the teeth, or impact to the mouth/head can also displace the joint, triggering the symptoms of TMD. When treated promptly, TMD can be quickly resolved and normal jaw function significantly restored.
TMD Treatment Options
The temporomandibular joint is a complex area of the body, and treatments must address not just the joint itself but also the affected muscles, ligaments, tendons, and teeth. In order to reduce or eliminate symptoms as well as prevent the deterioration of cartilage, there are a number of treatment options our dentists can employ. Treatment options include:
- Physical therapy
- Removable oral appliances
- Restorative dentistry
In extreme cases, oral surgery may be required as a last resort. For this reason, our dentists stress the importance of early diagnosis and treatment before the condition worsens and symptoms become more severe.
Contact Preferred Family Dental
To learn more about TMD and the treatments available to you, please contact Preferred Family Dental today for a consultation.