Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is what connects the lower part of your jaw to your skull and allows the movements for chewing and speaking. If there’s a problem with the jaw joint or the muscles around it, you’ll suffer from what is known as a TMJ disorder. Not only will your jaw frequently be in pain, but you might also have trouble opening and closing your mouth. If jaw pain is starting to disrupt your life, call Davis, Roberts, Boeller, & Rife today to start exploring your treatment options.
There are a number of symptoms that can be linked to a TMJ disorder. In addition to jaw pain, you might notice a clicking sound in the jaw near your ears, experience jaw or neck stiffness, experience difficulty when chewing, suffer from frequent headaches, or hear a ringing sound in your ears. We can take X-rays of your mouth and perform an examination to determine whether or not these issues are linked to a problem with your TMJ. If they are, we can recommend treatment based on your unique situation.
Some TMJ disorders are caused by an uneven bite. If the teeth don’t come together evenly throughout your mouth, the pressure of your bite will be unevenly distributed, and as a result your jaw joint could be exposed to more stress than necessary. We can restore balance to your bite by removing small amounts of enamel from your teeth so that they come together in the right spots and provide the support your jaw needs.
Bruxism (clenching and grinding of the teeth at night) is a common source of jaw pain. It often occurs as a result of stress, but it can have other causes as well. To protect your jaw from the pressure of bruxism, you can wear an oral splint to keep your upper and lower arches of teeth separated. These appliances will also help keep the jaw muscles relaxed, well-supported, and in the proper position, which can further help treat the symptoms of TMJ disorder.