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Temporomandibular Joint Disorders: What You Need to Know

April 30, 2024

Are you experiencing jaw pain, headaches, or neck discomfort? If so, you may have a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. At our dental office, we understand how frustrating these symptoms can be, and we're here to help.

Understanding the TMJ: Your Jaw's Complex Structure

Your jaw is made up of two temporomandibular joints that connect your lower jaw to your skull. These joints, along with surrounding muscles and ligaments, allow for a wide range of motion so you can chew, speak, yawn, and more. However, because the TMJ performs complex movements like sliding and rotating, it's one of the most intricate joints in your body and can be difficult to treat when problems arise.

Types & Symptoms of TMJ Disorders

TMJ disorders can vary greatly from person to person, but they generally fall into one or more of these categories:

  • Myofascial pain: This refers to jaw joint pain caused by increased muscle tension and spasms.
  • Internal derangement: Involves displacement of the disc, jaw dislocation, or trauma to the jawbone.
  • Degenerative joint disease: Arthritis affecting the TMJ.

Risk factors for developing a TMJ disorder include long-term teeth grinding (bruxism), jaw injuries, and certain types of arthritis like rheumatoid or osteoarthritis. Symptoms can range from earaches and headaches to neck pain, vertigo, muscle spasms, joint tenderness, and more. The severity and duration of these symptoms can vary greatly from person to person.

Restoring Your Jaw's Health & Comfort

While TMJ disorders can be frustrating, treatment is available at our dental office. We offer personalized care tailored to your specific needs, including:

  • Occlusal equilibration: Adjusting the alignment of your teeth to help reduce strain on the TMJ.
  • Night guards and other oral appliances: Protecting your teeth and reducing jaw clenching or grinding during sleep.
  • Restorative dentistry: Repairing damaged teeth or improving bite alignment with crowns, bridges, or implants.

Our ultimate goal is to help you find relief from your TMJ symptoms and restore normal jaw function. If you're experiencing any of the signs or symptoms we've mentioned, don't hesitate to give us a call. Our dedicated staff at Dynamic Dental Wellness will be more than happy to assist you.

Contact us to make an appointment today!