Temporomandibular joint syndrome is estimated to affect more than 10 million Americans. More commonly referred to as TMJ, this class of disorders encompasses issues with the jaw joint and chewing muscles. If you are suffering from unexplained jaw pain, you may be experiencing TMJ.
5 Family Dentistry Fixes For TMJ
1. Stabilization Splints
One of the most common fixes for TMJ is a bite guard that fits over your upper and lower teeth, stabilizing them. Such splints are recommended for short-term use only, so if this doesn’t address your symptoms, consult your dentist again.
2. Physical Therapy
A visit to your local family dentistry may offer an education in facial exercises and massage techniques for treating TMJ. This is especially effective in recurring or chronic cases of the syndrome, as it provides a non-invasive solution you can implement on a long-term basis.
Improper function of the muscles in the jaw may also contribute to TMJ. For this reason, some dentists may suggest Botox as a viable solution. This popular cosmetic injectable relaxes the facial muscles, which can ease the strain of TMJ.
4. Dental Bridges Or Implants
In some cases, a misaligned bite may be the cause of TMJ. A missing tooth can lead to such irregularity, as it causes other teeth in your mouth to shift out of place. Your dentist can install a dental bridge or implant to nix this gap and realign your bite.
5. Jaw Surgery
If your TMJ-related pain has become unmanageable, you may qualify for a surgical replacement of your jaw joints using artificial implants. However, most dentists will recommend more conservative measures. Only about 1% of patients with TMJ require a surgical solution like joint replacement surgery—a simpler solution is almost guaranteed to take care of the problem.
If you suspect you are suffering from TMJ, these five solutions may alleviate your pain. A dentist can diagnose the origin of your symptoms and suggest the best possible option. Randall A. Ellis DDS in Texarkana, AR, offers a variety of TMJ treatments and tailors them to each patient’s needs. Visit the family dentistry clinic’s website or call (870) 772-1374 to find out more.