Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder impacts about 10 million Americans. Typically, more women than men experience TMJ. This condition occurs when the joint that allows your jaw to open and close becomes tender, causes pain or makes it difficult to move your jaw, eat, or talk.
Our team of specialists at Dental Town DC in Washington, DC, provides expert TMJ treatment. We have the knowledge and treatments to minimize your symptoms or eliminate them completely.
Symptoms of TMJ
TMJ has a variety of symptoms that you can recognize easily, including:
- Popping sound in your jaw when you open or close your mouth
- Locked up jaw
- Pain in and around your ears
- Pain in your eyes
- Pain in your face
- Tenderness in your jaw
If you have a clicking sound when you chew or talk, but don’t feel any pain, you don’t necessarily need treatment. If you show any of the above symptoms, we can effectively treat your TMJ.
Causes of TMJ
The bones that work with your temporomandibular joints are covered with cartilage and separated by shock-absorbing discs, which keep the motion of your jaw moving smoothly.
Research shows that TMJ can develop if any of the following occur:
- Disc shifting out of alignment
- Arthritis in your cartilage
- Blow to your joint
- Grinding your teeth
- Off-set bite
The causes of TMJ aren’t clear, but if you notice the connection between your causes and symptoms, you should schedule an appointment to come in and see us for an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Treatment for TMJ
For immediate relief when you’re at home, apply a warm compress to your jaw or take anti-inflammatory medication, as needed.
When you meet with our medical team, we first give you an orthotic device to wear on your bottom teeth for four to six months. We monitor your progress to make sure your symptoms start to subside. Once they do, we provide you with a bite splint that you bite down on to relieve any familiar symptoms if they reappear.
If you still have ongoing symptoms, we have more extensive treatments, such as replacing missing teeth that might be causing your TMJ, giving you braces, or restoring your teeth with crowns to give you a proper bite.
If you have symptoms of TMJ, schedule an appointment with our team today. Call us or request your visit online. We look forward to helping you!