Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD) is a condition that affects many adults. There’s a lot of confusion about the condition, and many people are unsure whether or not they have it (or they think they do, but it’s actually another problem!) TMJD has several classic symptoms that overlap with other types of orofacial conditions.
Popping or Locking of the Joint
Jaw popping or locking in place indicates that something is out of alignment. The jaw could potentially become locked open or shut for an extended period of time, requiring a professional’s help to reposition it.
Deviation when Opening and Closing
If the jaw is functioning improperly, it could be due to damage within the joint. This would case the jaw to deviate to one side or the other when opening and closing.
Overuse of the jaw joint can cause pain, but if regular things like eating breakfast or talking become painful, then it’s time to have your dentist see what is wrong. Using warm compresses and pain relievers can alleviate temporary pain.
To determine whether or not you truly have a TMJ disorder, your dentist will need to conduct an exam. It could be that chronic clenching or grinding is causing the excessive strain of the joint. This will be determined by palpating your facial muscles, feeling the joint move and assessing the wear patterns on your teeth. A bite splint is usually effective at preventing stress-induced TMJ pain that is caused by clenching and grinding. Some dentists also offer services like Botox or muscle relaxers if the condition is truly restricted to the joint itself. Schedule an exam with your dentist for the pain relief that you deserve.
Posted on behalf of:
Kennesaw Mountain Dental Associates
1815 Old 41 Hwy NW #310
Kennesaw, GA 30152
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