If you experience discomfort when you chew or yawn, you may have an issue with your temporomandibular joints (TMJ). This condition causes a clicking sound and pain in your jaw when biting or opening your mouth widely. If you’re looking for ways to alleviate discomfort before seeing your dentist, consider the following at-home methods.
What is TMJ Disorder?
You have temporomandibular joints on each side of your face that act like sliding hinges, connecting your jawbone to your skull. When TMJ disorder occurs, you may experience pain in the joint itself as well as the surrounding muscles. Symptoms associated with TMJ problems may result in ear pain, a locked or stiff jaw, or difficulty chewing. While the exact cause of TMJ disorder is being researched, factors that contribute to its development include genetics, arthritis, bruxism, and a previous jaw injury.
What Relief Methods are Available?
Luckily, most cases of TMJ discomfort can be remedied at home. Try applying ice or heat depending on the pain. For sharp pains, use an ice pack on the area for no more than 20 minutes every two hours. However, if the ache is dull, soak a washcloth in warm water and gently massage your jaw while it rests on your face.
If at-home remedies don’t provide relief, schedule an appointment with your dentist to have the severity of your TMJ disorder evaluated. They can offer varying treatments ranging from injections and therapy to surgery.
If you’re experiencing problems with your TMJ and want to discuss your treatment options with a dentist, talk to the professionals at Alliance Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery in Keller, TX. Drs. Macholl and Parmer strive to make every patient feel comfortable, whether they require wisdom teeth extraction or jaw surgery. To learn more, visit them online or call (817) 741-2200.