Good oral health means paying attention to more than just your teeth and gums. The jawbone, along with the surrounding muscles and joints, plays a very important role. The jawbone joints may develop problems over time that, if left untreated, can cause other problems, including teeth grinding, lockjaw, and severe headaches.
What is TMJ?
The temporomandibular joint is the part of your mouth that lets you open and close as well as move your jaw from side to side. There are two of these important joints, one on each side of your face and just below your jaw. Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) is what happens when these joints become misaligned, resulting in many potential unwanted conditions and disrupting your oral health system.
TMJ is sometimes tricky to diagnose since many of the symptoms can be mistaken for other problems. During your regularly scheduled cleanings and exams, however, we carefully examine your jaw for signs of TMJ. If we notice anything out of place, we’ll discuss it with you, talk about options, and help you decide on a plan of treatment.
What are the symptoms of TMJ?
There are several things that you can watch out for as symptoms of TMJ. Most will occur in the immediate region around the jaw.
- Popping, clicking or grinding sounds, particularly when opening or shutting the mouth
- Jaw pain
- Swelling in and around the jaw
There are also many symptoms of TMJ that may seem to have nothing to do with the jaw at all, including:
- Changes in posture
- Pain and pressure in the eyes
- Ringing in the ear
- Overall facial pain
- Shoulder and neck pain
- Persistent headaches
If you have any of these symptoms, let your dentist know. They can do a thorough exam to see if they are related to possible TMJ. We’ll work with you to create a customized treatment plan that will restore perfect alignment in your jaw and alleviate those nasty symptoms.
How do you diagnose TMJ?
When it comes to TMJ pain, it is critical to pinpoint the cause. If you don’t know how the problem developed in the first place, it may return even after treatment.
There is no reason to continue suffering. Let us know if you are experiencing any symptoms, and we’ll help you find the root of the problem.
Our goal is to get you back to your smiling self as fast as possible!