Your Go-To Temporomandibular Joint Disorder Specialist
LifeStyle Dentistry provides premier temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) treatment options in Rogers, AR. As one of the local leaders in general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry services, you can count on our professionals to provide you with exceptional, personalized service. We offer high-quality, comprehensive dental care services in a relaxing environment. Our expert team delivers personalized dental care to each of our valued patients using state-of-the-art equipment and techniques.
“…..relaxed and comfortable setting. I especially like the massage chair.”
What Is TMJ?
TMJ is the acronym for the temporomandibular joint, which connects your lower jaw (the mandible) to your skull at the temporal bone. This joint controls many jaw functions, like chewing. If the chewing muscles or the joint itself are causing you pain, you may have a temporomandibular joint disorder. What is temporomandibular joint disorder? Temporomandibular joint disorder is caused by stress on the jaw joints, continual clenching of the jaw muscles, or teeth grinding (bruxism).
What Causes TMJ Disorders?
The causes of someone’s temporomandibular joint disorder can be challenging to diagnose. This is because the pain this disorder causes can be due to a wide range of factors, such as genetics, arthritis, jaw injury, and more. For some, jaw pain may be caused by bruxism and not TMD. Though TMD can be difficult to diagnose, the pain it causes can be relieved and managed with self-care and various non-surgical treatments offered at LifeStyle Dentistry.
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of TMJ?
If you’ve ever wondered, what are the signs of TMJ? You don’t have to wonder any longer. Many symptoms of temporomandibular joint disorder can often be associated with other health problems, however, so it’s important to consult a medical professional to determine if you have TMD. Teeth grinding is an especially problematic symptom because it can lead to further problems. Prolonged teeth grinding, also called bruxism, can cause enamel to wear off teeth and expose dentin. This material is softer than enamel and more susceptible to decay. Sensitivity to hot and cold food or drink may also develop from excessive teeth grinding. The signs and symptoms of TMJ include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Pain when opening or closing mouth
- Trouble chewing
- Jaw becoming stuck open or shut
- Headaches or ear pain
- Clicking or popping sounds when opening your mouth
- Teeth grinding
Diagnosis Of TMJ
When you visit LifeStyle Dentistry with signs or symptoms of TMJ, we will examine your jaw joints for pain or tenderness and listen for clicks, pops, and grating sounds when you move your jaw. We will also test your bite and facial muscles. Depending on what we find, we may order full facial x-rays to more accurately examine your jaws, temporomandibular joints, and teeth to rule out other problems. Additional tests such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computer tomography (CT) may be ordered depending on your unique situation. An MRI will show us if your TMJ disc is in the proper position as your jaw moves, while a CT will show us the bony detail of your joints. After your diagnosis, we may refer you to an oral surgeon or orthodontist, depending on your needs.
What Is Treatment For TMJ?
When it comes to temporomandibular joint disorder treatment options, it’s not one-size-fits-all. Treatment options include various medications, therapies, and various non-surgical and surgical procedures. Medication options include pain relievers, anti-inflammatories, and muscle relaxants. Therapy options include oral splints, mouthguards, physical therapy, and counseling. Non-surgical and surgical procedure options include arthrocentesis, injections, TMJ arthroscopy, modified condylotomy, and open-joint surgery. In some cases, TMJ disorders may go away without treatment. However, if you have persisting symptoms, reach out to the professional team at LifeStyle Dentistry today.
If you have been diagnosed with TMD, it’s essential to exercise TMJ maintenance. This kind of maintenance will allow you to manage your symptoms and relieve any pain you may be experiencing without the need for surgery. TMJ maintenance can include:
- Maintaining a resting position for your jaw
- Correcting your posture
- Ensuring you get enough sleep
- Applying hot or cold compresses
- Exercising your jaw muscles
- Reducing your overall stress
- Avoiding certain activities or foods
Contact LifeStyle Dentistry Today For Treatment
If you suspect you may have TMD, we encourage you to come in for a consultation. We can help diagnose you and provide relief for your symptoms. Pain relievers and other self-care solutions are short-term methods to provide relief for pain symptoms. A protective appliance can help prevent or lessen the effects of teeth grinding at night, which can lead to a more permanent solution. In severe cases of TMD, surgery may be required. However, behavioral treatments to change how you use your jaw muscles are usually enough to provide relief. To schedule an evaluation with one of the LifeStyle Dentistry experts, contact us today. We look forward to serving you.