What is TMD Treatment?
If you suffer from headaches, breathing issues, dizziness, locked jaw, ear pain or snoring, it could be your Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ). Your Temporomandibular Joint is located close to your ear between your upper and lower jaw. People with Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) can experience severe pain or discomfort that may either be temporary or last for many years. A complete dental and medical evaluation is required for proper diagnosis of TMD. To evaluate whether you have TMD, your doctor will check for a variety of symptoms, including clicking or popping of the jaw joint and diagnostic wear patterns of the teeth. Many patients suffer from severe bruxism or grinding of the teeth at night. This can be harmful to your teeth and cause TMJ pain. Some patients simply clench their teeth during the day or at night. Clenching of the teeth is usually linked to increased stress levels. People with clenching, grinding or bruxism habits wear their tooth’s enamel away faster than normal and more frequently suffer from TMD.
Symptoms associated with TMJ Disorder:
- Biting or chewing difficulty or discomfort
- Difficulty opening or closing the mouth
- Dull, aching pain on the side of the face
- Jaw pain or tenderness
- Clicking, popping, or rough sound when opening or closing the mouth
- Locking of the jaw
The effects of physical stress on the structures around the joint cause many TMJ-related symptoms. These structures include:
- Muscles of the jaw, face and neck
- Cartilage at the joint
- Nearby ligaments, blood vessels, and nerves
A nightguard is the most common treatment option for symptoms of TMD. A night guard is a plastic appliance that is professionally made by your dentist. The appliance is worn at night and can either be worn on the top or bottom arch. It is designed to protect the teeth from the pressure of clenching and grinding by providing a protective cushion between the upper and lower teeth. A night guard is a simple, non-invasive, affordable treatment option for protecting your teeth and jaws from the damaging effects of bruxism.