Your upper and lower jaws are connected by the temporomandibular joint. This hinge allows for the movement of your jaw. It regulates both the up and down motions used in speaking and chewing, as well as side to side movements.
Problems with this joint can lead to pain and headaches. If the muscles of the temporomandibular joint are over taxed or irritated, you will experience discomfort of some type. When you have pain that originates from the muscles in this joint, you are experiencing what is known as TMJ or TMD, temporomandibular joint disorder.
The treatment for TMJ/TMD depends on the severity of the problem. Some cases require the patient to learn certain exercises to release the stress the muscles are undergoing. Other instances of the disorder will need more extensive dental treatment. Diagnosing the extent of the problem with testing will reveal the most advantageous treatment route. Your dentist will discuss your options with you and get you on the road to pain-free living again.
Jaw Pain, Facial Pain Relief!
Discomfort from TMD/TMJ can manifest in a variety of ways. Most common are the headaches experienced. In fact, 15 percent of the general population is plagued with headaches associated with TMJ/TMD. Most of these people are women. The pain can come and go or it can be constant. Many times the pain will stop on its own without intervention of any type. For some people, the discomfort persists and can involve the neck, shoulders and upper back.
Proper diagnosis and treatment of TMD/TMJ will relieve the pain you are experiencing. Medication may be prescribed to help manage the discomfort, along with exercises. Finding the cause of the strain on the joint helps determine the best course of action. Clenching your teeth and bruxism are often originators of TMD/TMJ discomfort. Nightguards can eliminate that problem and thus provide relief.
If your life is made miserable by headache pain and over-the-counter medications do not seem to help, contact Midgette Family Dentistry for an appointment. Through testing, we will find out if TMD/TMJ is the cause of your discomfort. If it is, we will create a treatment plan that will bring your relief.