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TMJ Treatment– Things to Know

TMJ treatment is available at our Cleveland TN oral surgery center for those dealing with jaw pain.

TMJ Q & A

 

Some estimates suggest that more than 10 million Americans are affected by TMJ disorder, and though for most people this painful condition does not signal a serious problem, it can still be rather unpleasant to deal with. If you are one of the many suffering from symptoms of TMJ, we want you to know that relief is achievable. At Ocoee Oral Surgery in Cleveland TN, we offer various TMJ treatments to help manage symptoms ranging from minor to severe. Our Chattanooga oral surgeons are here to help, and have rounded up a few FAQs about TMJ disorder that might help you better understand the condition and how to live with it.

TMJ treatment is available at our Cleveland TN oral surgery center for those dealing with jaw pain.

Q: What is TMJ?

A: TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint. You have one on either side of your face attaching your jaw to your skull. The muscles surrounding this joint work to allow your mouth to open and close. Sometimes these joints don’t move as they should or get out of alignment, causing issues like TMJ disorder.

Q: What are the signs and symptoms of TMJ disorder?

A: Symptoms of TMJ disorder include pain in one or both jaw joints, ear aches, pain when chewing, stiff muscles surrounding the jaw, pain in the face or neck, and changes in bite/how the teeth fit together.

Q: Does a popping sound when moving the jaw mean someone has TMJ disorder?

A: If clicking and popping of the jaw is accompanied by other symptoms, it could be linked to TMJ disorder; however, many people’s jaws make noise, and that alone doesn’t signify a problem.

Q: What causes TMJ?

A: The cause of TMD (temporomandibular disorder) is not always clear. Often it is caused by slipped cartilage that surrounds the jaw. Other potential causes include injury or dislocated jaw, misaligned teeth and/or jaws, grinding of the teeth, and arthritis, which can damage cartilage in the joint.

Q: Who usually gets TMJ disorder?

A: Up to 15% of adults suffer from TMJ disorder symptoms, and more women than men deal with this condition.

Q: Can orthodontic braces cause TMD?

A: Some people believe that braces or other orthodontic treatments can cause TMJ trouble; however, there is no research that supports that orthodontic braces bring on TMJ symptoms.

Q: How does an oral surgeon diagnose TMD?

A: If you present with symptoms of TMD, your oral surgeon will look for signs of jaw irritation or inflammation, listen for clicking and grinding sounds, and look into the range of motion of your jaw– how far it can move in any direction. The oral surgeon may also need x-rays or other imaging to get a clearer picture of the affected joint.

Q: What options exist for TMJ treatment?

A: Some easy, first-line-of-defense remedies for TMJ include over-the-counter pain relievers, cold or hot compress on the jaw area, consumption of softer foods, limiting jaw movement when plausible, exercises that stretch and relax the jaw, and limiting activities like gum chewing and nail biting that can exacerbate symptoms.

Q: Does stress/anxiety affect TMJ symptoms?

A: Teeth grinding and jaw clenching often accompany stress and anxiety, and can cause jaw problems. Therefore, stress management can help minimize the TMJ symptoms a patient experiences. Your oral surgeon may suggest exercise, meditation, and hobbies that can help reduce stress and help mitigate jaw pain and other issues caused by TMJ flare ups.

Q: What other TMJ treatments are available for more severe cases?

A: If you’re still experiencing issues with TMD, your oral surgeon might recommend some of the following options for treatment:

  • A mouthguard to help protect your teeth from excessive grinding and clenching
  • Orthodontic braces to fix a problematic, uneven bite
  • Injections of Botox into the jaw muscles to help manage pain and promote relaxation

Q: Are surgeries ever required as a TMJ treatment?

A: If your symptoms are severe enough, your Cleveland oral surgeon might recommend surgery to address a structural problem of the jaw. In some cases the surgeon can fix the joint problem, and in others, replace the joint altogether.

If you are suffering from the symptoms of TMJ and are seeking TMJ treatment in the Cleveland, TN or Chattanooga areas, our team at Ocoee Oral Surgery would love to help you get the relief you’re looking for. Get in touch with our office today to set up a consultation. You don’t have to just deal with the symptoms. Let’s work together to find a treatment plan that works for your specific case.

Living With TMJ Symptoms – Effects & Treatment Options for Pain Relief

Our Cleveland TN practice can help with treatment for TMJ symptoms like jaw pain, popping and clicking jaw, and other symptoms.

Our Cleveland TN practice can help with treatment for TMJ symptoms like jaw pain, popping and clicking jaw, and other symptoms.

Living with TMJ can be incredibly painful and disruptive to overall quality of life, but if you suffer from the effects of this temporomandibular disorder (TMD), there are measures you can take to minimize the discomfort that comes along with it. The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) acts as a hinge, connecting your jawbone to your skull on both sides. TMJ disorders can cause pain in the jaw joint itself, as well as the surrounding muscles that control jaw movement.

What causes TMJ?

The exact cause of one’s TMJ disorder can be difficult to pinpoint, and can often be attributed to a combination of factors ranging from genetic makeup to jaw injury or arthritis. Some folks who struggle with bruxism (teeth grinding) and clenching can experience jaw pain as a result of those behaviors, which can be linked to a TMJ disorder. Sometimes TMJ can be triggered or worsened by excessive stress. But regardless of the cause, the symptoms of this condition are unpleasant to say the least.

Sometimes bruxism, grinding and clenching the teeth, can lead to TMJ and jaw pain. Our staff at Ocoee Oral Surgery in Cleveland TN can help!

TMJ Symptoms

If you think you may be suffering from TMJ pain, there are certain symptoms to look out for that will help you better make a determination. If you’re experiencing any of the below symptoms, you may want to talk with one of our providers at Cleveland TN Ocoee Oral Surgery about treatment options, and how to best manage your condition.

  • Pain and tenderness in the jaw area
  • Pain in one or both of the temporomandibular joints
  • Aching facial pain, and pain in or around the ear or ears
  • Locking of the jaw
  • Jaw popping or making clicking sounds
  • Difficulty or pain while chewing

TMJ Treatment Options

Oftentimes, the effects of TMJ disorders are pretty responsive to home remedies such as ice packs on the joints, over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs, massage, and stress management. Avoiding things like gum chewing, and being aware of harmful behaviors like jaw clenching can also help minimize TMJ pain and symptoms. But when home treatment doesn’t make much of a difference, there are other treatments you can seek out through your dentist or oral surgeon. Treatment options will look different for each individual patient, but may include things like dental splints, Botox injections, physical therapy, and medications, and sometimes in cases that are more severe, surgery is the best option.

If you are struggling with pain from TMJ, don’t suffer in silence. Reach out to us at Ocoee, because we would love to help you find some relief. We’re here to answer any questions you may have, and help you figure out a treatment plan that works best for you.

TMJ: Break These Bad Habits

Cleveland TMJ pain jaw discomfort

Cleveland TMJ pain jaw discomfortExperiencing temporomandibular joint pain? You might have TMJ. The symptoms can be identified when the joints of the jaw and muscles do not work together correctly. Since some types of TMJ can lead to more serious conditions, prevention and early detection is key. If you are experiencing minor jaw pain, here are three bad habits that you can break today to prevent any longterm TMJ disorders from occurring or worsening.

  1. Biting your nails
  2. Overworking (anxiety and stress)
  3. Control caffeine consumption

Bad habits, even if believed to be innocent, may actually be affecting your health. For example, if you have one or more of these bad habits, you may be creating the root of the problem.

1. Biting Nails: Biting your fingernails exercises the jaw to work in an unnatural way. This anxiety-induced habit can aggravate and cause jaw discomfort, which in most cases, leads to TMJ

Looking for ways to quit biting your nails? Here are some tips!

  • Paint your nails using a nail polish.
  • Keep nails trimmed short.
  • Recruit the help of friends and family to bring attention to the habit.

2. Grinding Teeth or Clenching Jaw: This common habit is often found in patients who experience higher levels of stress and anxiety; this can result in clenching or grinding, both conscious or unconscious.

Looking for ways to quit grinding your teeth? Here are some tips!

  • Acknowledge and manage your stress and anxiety levels.
  • Wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth and jaw.
  • Periodically reposition your tongue between teeth to relax the jaw.

Cut the Caffeine : With all the possibilities that may cause TMJ flareups, caffeine might just be the hardest to give up for the majority of patients. So what does caffeine have to do with TMJ? Essentially the chemical reaction that creates alertness winds up your nervous system, which can worsen already aggravated tissues in the head, neck and jaw.

Looking for ways to cut the caffeine? Here are some tips!

  • Don’t give up your morning cup of coffee – just switch to decaf.
  • Trade your coffee pot for a tea kettle. Drinking green tea is a natural energizer, while also providing a plethora of antioxidants and nutrients.

If you’re experiencing consistent jaw pain, it may be time to make an appointment with Ocoee Oral Surgery of Cleveland, TN. Schedule an appointment today to learn more about TMJ and our available treatment options for you.