Are you aware of what the temporomandibular joint is? It is a joint that connects your jawbone to your skull, and it springs into action every time you talk, chew, or swallow. One joint is present on either side of your jaw. If you are affected by TMJ disorders, pain is experienced in the jaw joint and the muscles controlling the movement of your jaw.
The exact reasons for TMJ disorders are often challenging to determine. The pain you suffer from could be a combination of factors like genetics, arthritis, or jaw injury. If you are regularly clenching and grinding your teeth when sleeping, you could suffer from pain in the jaw, but the problem does not affect everyone who clenches and grinds their teeth.
The pain and discomfort associated with TMJ disorders are temporary, and relief can be found with self-managed care and nonsurgical treatment. Surgery is considered as a last resort after the failure of conservative methods, but some people with the disorder may find relief from surgical procedures.
TMJ disorders have different signs and symptoms, some of which are the following:
Clicking sounds or grating sensations are also familiar with TMJ disorders when the mouth is opened for chewing. However, if you have no pain or do not experience any limitation moving your jaw, you probably do not need TMJ treatment.
You must seek medical attention for TMJ treatment near you if the pain or tenderness in your jaw is persistent or you have difficulties opening and closing your mouth. The physician, your dentist, or a TMJ specialist can determine the possible causes and treatments for your condition.
The temporomandibular joint combines sliding motions with a hinge action. The interacting parts of the bone in the joint are covered with cartilage and separated by a tiny shock-absorbing disk, which generally smoothens the movement. You may experience painful TMJ disorders if the disk erodes or moves out of proper alignment, the cartilage of the joint is damaged by arthritis or impacts to the joint damage it. However, the exact causes of TMJ disorders aren’t clear to the medical fraternity.
You could be at an increased risk of being affected by TMJ disorders if you have jaw injuries, chronic bruxism or clenching and branding of the teeth, connective tissue diseases of some types that can cause problems in the temporomandibular joint, and different kinds of arthritis like osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
When diagnosing TMJ disorders, physicians or dentists take x-rays to examine your teeth and jaw, CT scans to look at detailed images of the bones involved, and MRI scans to identify problems with the disk of the joint or the surrounding soft tissue.
TMJ disorders can disappear without treatment in some cases. When the symptoms persist, the dentist or doctor recommends a variety of treatment options sometimes combined to provide relief from the pain and discomfort.
Recommendations are provided to use pain relievers or anti-inflammatories purchased over the counter for relief from TMJ pain. Still, the dentist or doctor may also prescribe potent pain relievers for a limited period if necessary. Tricyclic antidepressants can also act as pain relievers to control bruxism and sleeplessness. Muscle relaxants may also be prescribed for a few days or weeks to find relief from the pain caused by TMJ disorders.
TMJ treatment in Magnolia, TX, may provide mouth guards or oral splints because many people have benefited from wearing a soft appliance inserted over their teeth. Reasons why these appliances are beneficial against TMJ disorders, have not been understood.
Education and counseling to understand the factors that aggravate the pain to learn how they can be avoided are also suggested by TMJ treatment in Woodlands, TX.
Some people affected by this condition find relief from Botox injections into the jaw muscles to relieve pain associated with TMJ disorders. In extreme circumstances, open joint surgery is performed when the jaw pain does not resolve by itself. However, the procedure involves risks and therefore, should be considered carefully if recommended by discussing the pros and cons of the method.
A better alternative would be to avoid overusing the muscles, eating soft foods, staying clear of sticky and chewy foods, and avoiding chewing gum altogether. Physical therapists suggest exercises, as they have proven as adequate but proper guidance, must be sought by consulting the TMJ specialist treating you.