TMJ – temporomandibular joint disorder – is a constellation of symptoms that affect the two major joints of the jaw. TMJ can arise as the result of several forms of trauma or damage. Some major contributors include injury to the teeth or jaw, misalignment of the teeth or jaw, poor posture, prolonged stress and arthritis. Even chewing gum can be a factor!
Common TMJ/TMD Symptoms
TMJ is often self-diagnosed by the patient before they have the opportunity to see a dentist. The symptoms are striking, can be acute and are difficult to confuse with other health problems. They include things like jaw pain, trouble chewing and clicking of the jaw joints. In the most serious cases, the jaw may become completely immobile.
TMJ Treatment at All Smiles
All Smiles is the TMJ dentist you can trust. Just ask anyone who’s come to our office concerned about root canal pain how easy we make even the most sophisticated dental procedures. Our experts will develop a customized treatment plan based on your needs. For most patients, it is possible to halt and even reverse the progress of TMJ.
TMJ disorder treatment can take a variety of forms. It is usually best to try the simplest and least invasive treatment first. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may be able to help in cases where TMJ is exacerbated by arthritis, grinding of the teeth or other repetitive injuries. Muscle relaxants can be helpful when stress is a factor.
Under appropriate medical supervision, a number of self-care and relaxation techniques may be effective. When symptoms persist despite medication and lifestyle changes, a specialized mouth guard can be provided by your dentist. This prevents you from forcefully biting down or grinding the teeth during the night.
Appointment frequency depends on the course of treatment and the severity of the issue. At the start of treatment, a check-in appointment should be scheduled about once a month or whenever the condition changes significantly. This allows for adjustment of treatment to match changing needs: Ideally, symptoms will subside within a short time.
When TMJ is an ongoing issue, an appointment might occur just once per quarter. For most people, a mouthguard can significantly control symptoms and curb their severity while other treatments are being pursued. Thus, appointments will tend to be less frequent if you choose this option. The ultimate goal is remission of TMJ and protection of the sensitive joints.
TMJ treatment cost depends on the approach taken and the number of follow-up visits you may need. At All Smiles Dentistry, we work hard to ensure your treatment is affordable. We have partnered with trusted brands to offer a range of financing options. Never feel like you have to put off necessary dental care until later – we can help!