Your TMJ (temporomandibular joint) is the hinge-like joint that is your jaw. When that joint malfunctions or gets inflamed, the condition is called TMJD, TMD, or temporomandibular joint disorder.
Is there any connection between having crooked teeth and developing a painful jaw dysfunction?
Tooth Alignment Matters
Tooth alignment involves more than looks alone. The positioning of your teeth impacts the health of your entire mouth.
For example, cavity-causing bacteria can hide out in the tight spaces between overlapping teeth.
But the problems don’t stop there.
“Natural” tooth alignment isn’t something an orthodontist just made up. When teeth come in nice and straight, this allows them to equally interact in the chewing process. Straight teeth improve the function and balance of your bite.
How is Your TMJ Involved?
If crooked teeth are experiencing uneven pressure during biting and chewing, then this means that the joint moving those teeth is also affected.
Sometimes, a tooth out of alignment may meet the opposing teeth sooner than its neighbors. This can mean that the jaw is closing sooner on one side than on the other.
To illustrate, imagine what it would feel like to chew on just one side of your mouth all the time.
That’s what can happen to your jaw if crooked teeth are throwing your bite out of balance. One side gets worked harder than the other. Over time, the stress can lead to major problems.
What should you do?
If you suspect that you have any symptoms of TMD like pain, stiffness, or limited jaw opening, contact your dentist. Find out how your bite may be affecting your TMJ. Your dentist or orthodontist can use braces to correct bite problems that cause or aggravate TMD. Orthodontic treatment could be the ticket to a more comfortable smile.
Posted on behalf of:
Broad Street Braces
2010 South Juniper Street
Philadelphia, PA 19148
How is that even possible? Especially when braces come with the reputation for being painful in themselves. Despite the apparent contradiction, orthodontic treatment could be your key to relief from TMJ pain.
What’s Causing Your TMJ Problem?
Your TMJ (temporomandibular joint) is a very complex structure. It’s a combination glide and hinge joint made up of muscles, ligaments, cartilage, and fluid. When something goes wrong, it can be very tricky to determine exactly what it is.
TMJ issues have been linked to things such as:
That last factor is what we’re particularly interested in, right now.
How Tooth Alignment Affects Your Jaw
It’s quite possible that because your bite is off just a little bit, your jaw is being unevenly strained.
Teeth that stick out from the rest can get in the way of your mouth closing together evenly. Encouraging those teeth back into proper position will take a good deal of stress off your jaw.
Effective TMJ Treatment
Because of how tricky it is to diagnose TMJ problems, it’s also difficult to prescribe the one single type of treatment. When you consider the possible contributing factors, you might find that it could be a combination of things.
For example, it’s very common to combine orthodontic treatment with a special mouth guar or massage therapy to bring teeth back in line and take some tension off your jaw.
Suffering from jaw pain? Even a little discomfort can have a big effect on your life.
Call your dentist to schedule a TMJ evaluation and find out whether orthodontic treatment could help you out.
Posted on behalf of:
2609 Peachtree Pkwy #C
Suwanee, GA 30024
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