If you have ever experience intense pain in your jaw or sudden, painful cracking in your mouth, you may be dealing with a common issue known as TMJ. Temporomandibular Joint Disorder is an issue that your dentist is familiar with. This guide will help you determine whether or not you have TMJ as well as how to deal with it.
1. Symptoms of TMJ differ for each person.
Of course, the symptoms of TMJ will differ for each person, so the symptoms you have may be a bit different from somebody else's. Your dentist will be well-acquainted with different symptoms. The most common symptom is clicking and cracking of the jaw when you open it. You may also feel a bit of pain or some tenderness when you press on the joint. Other common symptoms include dislocation of the jaw, pain around the ear, and stiffness in the jaw. You might even feel headaches that feel like migraines.
2. Traditional treatment requires finding the cause of TMJ.
If you opt for traditional TMJ treatment, the dentist will carefully exam the joints of your face and jaw to look for the cause. Most cases can be solved this way. For instance, your TMJ could be caused by a bad bite or jaw misalignment. This can be treated with appliances like braces.
3. You might want to consider surgery for TMJ.
Surgery is considered a last resort for TMJ, but in some cases it is a necessity for comfortable living. The procedure is usually minor but may also include repositioning of the disc in the joint hinge. Some cases require arthroscopy, which includes a small incision at the temple.
4. Some people swear by radio wave therapy.
Alternative treatments are available for those dealing with TMJ. You may opt to seek this out if you are wary about going through the surgical procedure. This process involves the use of radio waves used in the hopes of stimulating blood flow to joint areas. Unfortunately, this option provides relief but does not necessarily treat the primary causes associated with TMJ.
There are actually a few different ways you can treat TMJ, but the key is to speak with your dentist about the condition as soon as you experience symptoms. If you have questions about your condition, your family dentist can give you more information. This condition can worsen without treatment or attention from a dental professional.