Everything You Need to Know About TMJ

Everything You Need to Know About TMJ

December 16, 2018

What is TMJ?

Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome, also called TMJ for short, affects the joint that connects your jaw to your skull at the back of the cheekbone. This joint is the hinge that keeps your jaw connected to your skull. If someone is suffering from TMJ, they most often have a damaged or otherwise compromised temporomandibular joint – most often only on one side, but it’s not uncommon to have concerns on both sides.

What Causes TMJ?

It’s hard to answer this question in a few simple words since there can be various causes such as genetic factors, stress, certain types of arthritis, old injuries to the jaw and teeth, grinding and clenching the teeth, and dislocating the disc between temporomandibular joint and skull.

Is TMJ Painful?

Yes. Those who suffer from TMJ report feeling tightness and sharp pain in their jaws and across their entire face. It can also produce migraine and cluster headaches. Fortunately, the pain and headaches will go away once your TMJ has been treated.

What are Common TMJ Symptoms?

One of the most often reported symptoms of TMJ apart from headaches is a clicking or popping sound when you open and close your mouth. Following are some others:

  • Jaw, ear, eye, mouth pain
  • Tightness across your face
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Pain while chewing

TMJ Treatments and Therapies

One of the most common forms of TMJ treatment is a custom-made dental appliance, similar to the mouth guards that athletes wear. Physical therapy that includes hot or cold therapy and jaw, mouth, and face exercises is another common treatment for TMJ. Another treatment option involves injections which may provide pain and symptom relief for TMJ.

What About Surgery?

While surgery is a treatment option, it isn’t usually necessary, and should only be considered if other treatments and therapies haven’t worked to relieve your symptoms.

Ready to Learn More?

At the dental office of Beverly Thurmond, DDS we are proud to offer TMJ mouthguards for our patients seeking relief from their TMJ symptoms. Our oral appliances are designed per patient to ensure maximum comfort and the most protection possible. Make your appointment today to so you can get relief tomorrow!