What does TMJ mean?
The temporomandibular joint is known as the TMJ. This is the joint where your jaw intersects with your skull. If this joint is not functioning smoothly, a number of serious conditions can develop. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that as many as 10 million Americans suffer from TMJ problems of one kind or another.
What causes TMJ Disorders?
The dysfunction of the TMJ can be caused in several ways including trauma, a misaligned bite, physical stress, or even emotional stress. Eventually, the accumulated pain produces a variety of symptoms.
What might indicate TMJ problems?
The following symptoms may indicate a TMJ problem:
Headaches of any kind, and especially chronically occurring migraines
Chronically occurring earaches
Bruxism (more commonly known as teeth grinding)
The inability to open or close your mouth completely
A popping or clicking noise each time you open your jaw
A tingling in your fingers
Pain in the face, neck, shoulder, lower back, or jaw that is unexplained
At Comprehensive Family Dentistry, Dr. Dempsey and his staff can perform a thorough examination of your jaw to locate the source of your TMJ issues. Most patients find relief with simple oral appliances. These thin, comfortable mouth guards will reposition your jaw and ease the stress on your TMJ to ensure the alignment of your joint is correct. Realigning your jaw can quickly reduce headaches and other symptoms that come from TMJ issues.
There are additional treatments for a variety of scenarios. These treatments can include lifestyle adjustments, stress management advice, or even building up the surface of your back teeth to correct your misaligned bite.