The jaw joint is largely responsible for your ability to open and close your mouth, chew, breathe, and speak. When the joint and the supporting muscles are off kilter, you’re at risk for a chain-reaction of oral and health problems—many of which can lead to enough pain and discomfort to disrupt your daily life. This type of dysfunction as it relates to the jaw joint and muscles is known as TMJ disorder, and it often requires the expertise of a qualified oral surgeon.
TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders can manifest in a number of ways and the signs and symptoms can vary widely. A diagnosis can be achieved and the appropriate therapy can be rendered after a full clinical examination has been performed.
Are You Experiencing a TMJ Problem?
Temporomandibular joint problems are sometimes limited to the actual jaw joint, in which case you may be experiencing symptoms such as popping and clicking, pain, limited range of motion in the joint, or lockjaw. As the condition spreads to include the muscles that support the jaw joint, headaches and neck aches may become more noticeable. Your oral symptoms might include chipped teeth, worn or flattened teeth, receding gums, sensitivity, or chronic clenching and grinding of the teeth (typically a nighttime habit).
The symptoms and side-effects of a dysfunctional jaw joint can progress steadily without the appropriate treatment. The proper treatment can be implemented once the source of the problem has been identified. In all cases, the most conservative treatment will be recommended. Conservative therapy is typically non-surgical and designed to promote the body’s natural healing process through bite splint therapy, relaxation techniques, and/or anti-inflammatory agents. Orthodontic treatments and restorative dentistry are also effective in many instances.
If there is extensive damage to the jaw joint or if we have been unable to manage the condition with more conservative measures, then surgical procedures can be employed. When the need for surgical intervention arises, our oral surgery team is prepared to activate our advanced clinical, anesthetic, and sedative techniques to help regain your TMJ functions.
To arrange a personal TMJ consultation, please call to schedule your appointment today.