Temporomandibular joint disorders, or TMD for short, can cause pain in your jaw and surrounding facial muscles, making it difficult to eat and chew food properly. It can also make it difficult to open your mouth entirely or at all in some cases. Other symptoms can include headaches, earaches, and tooth sensitivity. TMD can be caused by several factors, including genetics, traumatic injuries, arthritis, teeth grinding, and stress. If you suspect you may have TMD, visit our dentist at Gallery 32 Dental Arts for an initial consultation.
The Symptoms of TMJ
One of the most common symptoms of TMD is jaw pain, which can range from mild to severe. This pain usually radiates from the jaw to the temples, ears, and neck. You may also feel pain in your shoulders or back as the inflammation spreads. You may hear clicking or popping sounds when you open and close your mouth. You might feel tenderness in your jaw muscles. Your teeth might shift, become loose, or even break. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, scheduling an exam with our dentist is the best course of action. They can diagnose you with TMD and recommend treatment. Of course, if you experience severe pain or any difficulty breathing, you should seek immediate medical attention.
What Are My Treatment Options for TMD?
TMD is an acronym commonly used to refer to temporomandibular joint disorders. The TMJ connects your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull and is responsible for helping you chew and speak. If the TMJ becomes inflamed or misaligned, you may experience several uncomfortable symptoms, such as aching facial muscles, difficulty chewing, clicking sounds when opening your mouth, headaches, earaches, dizziness, and more. Although you can’t prevent developing these disorders, you can take steps to minimize the discomfort they cause by talking with our dentist about different treatment methods.
If an alignment issue is causing your bite-related symptoms, you may benefit from orthodontic treatment such as braces or Invisalign® to reposition your teeth. If you suffer from frequent grinding and/or clenching of your teeth which may contribute to TMD, our dentist may recommend a custom mouthguard to be worn while you sleep to minimize enamel erosion and other damage. This can also help you avoid the development of teeth sensitivity. Finally, if your pain is caused by inflammation of the tissues that surround the joints, you may be prescribed medication to reduce swelling and relieve pain.
The sooner you seek treatment for your TMD, the more you can prevent the condition from worsening and causing more serious conditions down the road. Visit Gallery 32 Dental Arts at 3580 Piedmont Road NE, STE #104, Atlanta, GA 30305, or call (404) 255-6929 for the best dental care.