The Temporomandibular Joints are found at the sides of the face, just at the junction that connects the lower jaw to the skull. They are responsible for all movements of the lower jaw, such as biting and chewing, talking, yawning, etc. Inflammation of the TMJ can lead to a very painful condition called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD).
What are the Symptoms of TMJ Disorder?
- Severe pain the jaw joints when you move the lower jaw.
- Inability to bite and chew food effectively.
- Swelling and inflammation of the TMJ and surrounding tissues.
- Popping or picking sound when you move the lower jaw.
- Limited movement of the jaw.
- Frequent headaches.
- Severe wear of the teeth, which makes them appear worn down to their stubs.
What Causes TMJ Disorder?
In most cases, TMJ disorder is caused due to severe stress applied to the TMJ and surrounding tissues. Individuals who frequently clench their jaw or grind their teeth stand at a higher risk of developing TMJ disorder. Some of the other causes are frequent snacking, chewing gum, chewing on pen caps or rubber bands, awkward sleeping positions that exert pressure on the TMJ, external trauma to the jaws, etc.
How is TMJ Disorder Treated?
When you visit Hallmark Dental Group, our dentists will thoroughly screen your oral condition to understand how severely it affects the movement of your jaw and the pain it causes . One of the simplest ways to treat TMJ disorder is by massaging the TMJ and surrounding tissues to relieve the stress lodged in them. Hence, we will suggest massage therapy to help you find relief from the pain and discomfort.
We will suggest a nighttime bruxism guard to protect the teeth from undergoing severe wear. The protective night guards will be made from dental-grade plastic material that is biocompatible and retains its shape. It keeps the teeth from either jaw from coming in contact with each other, thereby avoiding abrasive wear. The customized guards offer an excellent fit, which keeps them from getting displaced in the mouth.
Apart from these treatment methods, you may make subtle changes to your everyday routine. Some of them are:
- Avoiding chewing gum.
- Avoiding frequent snacking.
- Making changes to your sleeping positions.
- Massaging the TMJ and surrounding tissues regularly.
- Avoiding unhealthy oral habits, such as chewing hard objects and opening bottle caps or plastic bags with the teeth.
- Choosing less chewy foods in the diet.
Schedule An Appointment
We invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Phillip Hall or Dr. James Phillips and learn more about TMJ treatment in Saint George, Utah. Contact us at 435-634-8338 or reach out through online consultation, and we’ll be happy to help.