Dentists do more than care about the health of your teeth. There are different components in the oral cavity, all of which matter in the sustenance of good oral health. One dental region that many people overlook in their oral health is the jawbone. Strong as it is, your jawbone can sometimes need treatment.
TMJ is one of those dental issues that affect the jawbone and the connective tissues thereof. While. Mild. TMJ may not be as concerning to you, some severe cases of this condition can lead to dental emergencies.
What is TMJ?
It is an oral disorder that meddles with the functionality of the jawbone. It features distress of the joint and connective tissue that connects your skull to your jawbone. The joint is called the temporomandibular joint, which is where the name of the condition comes from. The disorder of this joint, therefore, goes by the acronym TMJ or TMD.
TMJ is not a very common dental disorder, even though there are a number of patients who need TMJ treatment in Huntington Station. Most of the cases of TMJ resolve on their own within a few days, freeing people of the need to seek dental treatment. However, some cases of TMJ are very severe and require the immediate attention of a dentist near you.
How to Know You Have TMJ
Since it is not a very common dental problem, many patients are not aware of the condition until they get a dental exam from a dentist in Huntington, NY. Some of the symptoms that can indicate TMJ include:
Pain when eating – experiencing pain every time you chew your food can be a symptom of many oral problems, including TMJ.
Cranking noises when you move your mouth – the joint allows for the movement of your upper and lower jaw. When there is a dysfunction thereof, you will hear weird sounds every time you try to move your mouth.
Pain and swelling in other areas of your body – even though this condition is specific to the jawbone and the connecting tissues thereof, it causes other problems to your body. Usually, you may experience migraine headaches, neck pain, swelling of your eyes and cheeks, to mention a few. Unfortunately, you may not be able to relate such symptoms with TMJ, unless with proper diagnosis by a TMD dentist near you.
Jaw lock – it is the one symptom that distinctively indicates TMJ. It is when your upper and lower jaw is stuck in the open mouth position. This mostly happens when you yawn or laugh loudly. It can make it very difficult to close your mouth, unless with the help of a dental expert.
Treatment Options For TMJ
Depending on how severe your condition is, any of the following treatments may be prescribed by a dentist near you:
Oral appliance – a dentist in Huntington Station, NY, may recommend wearing a mouthpiece that will help with your treatment. Having that one of the main causes of TMJ is excessive teeth grinding, a mouthguard can help control the disease. The mouthguard is designed based on the impressions of your mouth. It then helps create a barrier for your upper and lower jaw, so that your teeth do not rub on each other when you sleep.
Lifestyle adjustments – this mainly includes making changes in your sleeping habits. Whichever side of your jawbone hurts needs ample rest to alleviate the pressure and tension thereof. Therefore, your dentist may recommend changing sleeping positions, so that the affected side of your jawbone does not get more pressure when you are sleeping.
Over-the-counter pain medication – the medication should be prescribed by your dentist. It can help alleviate your pain and discomfort. This is often a treatment alternative for mild TMJ that usually resolves by itself after a couple of days. The medication you get can also help reduce any swelling in your face and reduce other associated symptoms like migraine headaches.
Surgery – sometimes invasive measures are necessary to correctly treat your disorder. The surgery allows your oral surgeon to correct the position of the disc in the joint that is misplaced and causing the malfunctioning of the temporomandibular joint. Surgery is only performed for the complex cases of TMJ that cannot be treated by other treatment options.
Schedule a Consultation
Still confused about the types of TMJ treatment? Call us now at Smile Huntington and book a consultation with our dentist near you. We also cater to patients residing in Huntington, Huntington Station, Cold Spring Harbor, Old Hickory Lane, Hill Place, Overdale Court, Sundown Ct, Hildreth Avenue, and nearby communities.