What is TMJ Disorder?
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is located near your ear and acts as the hinge for your jaw. When issues arise with the TMJ, they are referred to as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). The pain associated with this condition can range from slightly bothersome to unbearable, in which case a complete lifestyle change may be necessary.
At Advanced Dental Care of Jasper, Texas, we can evaluate your condition to determine the degree of pain you’re experiencing, and recommend the appropriate dental treatment for your unique situation.
What Causes TMD?
Dr. Koch knows that the causes of TMJ disorder vary from patient to patient. He also knows that improper treatment can lead to long-term dental health problems.
Because the TMJ is located in a complex area of the face, and the flexibility of the joint itself permits vertical and horizontal movements, there are numerous reasons why TMD might develop.
For example, if the joint-supporting cartilage erodes, there’s no longer a protective cushion and TMD symptoms can arise. In some rare instances, trauma to the face, neck, or head can trigger also TMD.
The Signs of TMJ Disorder
The following signs might signify TMD is present:
Dr. Koch can perform a simple bite evaluation to determine if relief is possible from any of these symptoms.
Joint Vibration Analysis at Advanced Dental Care
Human joints have surfaces that rub together. When these surfaces are smooth and well lubricated, the biomechanical relationship produces little friction and little vibration. However, surface changes, such as those caused by degeneration, tears, or misalignment of the disk, typically produce friction and vibration.
Different disorders can produce different vibration patterns, and at Advanced Dental Care, we utilize computer-assisted technology to monitor and identify these patterns to distinguish your specific TMD.
Treating TMJ Disorder
Every dental patient is different, and each TMJ disorder requires specific consideration. Depending on your needs, Dr. Koch might place a small appliance onto your upper front teeth. The appliance clicks into place and relaxes your muscles, which in turn, reduces the frequency and intensity of your headache or neck pain.
Together, Dr. Koch uses the results from the bite evaluation and the appliance to diagnose the cause of your TMJ problem. After identifying the root cause of your TMJ disorder, you and Dr. Koch will discuss a treatment plan, and you’ll be one step closer to getting the relief you deserve.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you fix TMJ?
TMJ disorder can be fixed through a combination of different treatments. Every case is different, so Dr. Koch will need to evaluate your TMJ to determine which treatments may be beneficial to you.
Dr. Koch may recommend a mouthguard if you tend to grind your teeth, as this can protect your jaw from damage. He may also suggest mouth or throat exercises, relaxation techniques, or pain medications.
What is the main cause of TMJ?
Every case of TMJ disorder is different and there are many potential causes of issues. Some of the most common causes of TMJ issues include teeth grinding (bruxism), injury to the area, arthritis, and misalignment of the teeth.
At your consultation with Dr. Koch, he’ll thoroughly examine your teeth and go over your medical history to learn about the potential causes of your TMD. Dr. Koch will then work with you to determine which TMJ treatment method may work best for you.
Does TMJ go away?
TMJ issues can be significantly improved and even go away for some people with proper treatment from a medical professional. Whether your TMJ can go away depends on the cause of your TMD as well as your adherence to your treatment method.
Dr. Koch will do everything he can to help improve your TMJ issues. If you’re in pain, he can suggest jaw and mouth exercises and prescribe medication that can make you more comfortable.