Jaw pain is a common symptom of TMJ (temporomandibular joint) syndrome. This is a condition of the jaw nerves and muscles. The pain from this condition can be debilitating. If you want to know more about the available jaw pain and TMJ treatments from your dentist, here are the details.The TMJ connects the jawbone to…
What Are Common Treatments for TMJ?
If you suffer from jaw pain and clicking, neck discomfort, or severe headaches, the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), which connects the upper and lower jaws, may be the source of all your issues. The TMJ is the most commonly utilized and most complicated joint in the body, yet it is often underappreciated. A healthy TMJ allows us to move our jaws without thinking or discomfort, but things may go wrong at any moment. TMJ symptoms may develop into chronic TMJ problems if left untreated, yet only a few patients seek treatment for their symptoms.
Treatments for TMJ disorder
The following are TMJ treatment options available from the dentist:
TMJ problems affect most people at some time in their life and often go away without therapy. However, there are a variety of at-home TMJ treatments that patients can consider to alleviate their symptoms, including:
- Taking over-the-counter medications
- Perform jaw exercises (recommended by a dentist)
- Reduce stress by practicing mindfulness and relaxation
- Consuming a soft-food diet
- Avoiding yawning and chewing gums
- Using heat and ice packs
- Massaging the jaw muscles
TMJ has several causes, the most frequent of which are stress and lifestyle choices. Therefore, lifestyle change is one of the most effective first-line therapies. Regular visits to a dentist who can treat TMJ symptoms may aid in the early identification and treatment of TMJ problems.
When home remedies fail, dentists will recommend other TMJ treatment alternatives. Customized dental splints have been shown to decrease general clenching, avoid tooth grinding, and maintain dental alignment.
For mild TMJ problems, bite guards are the most often suggested therapy. Studies have shown splints to decrease TMJ discomfort while posing a low risk of long-term adverse effects. A TMJ mouthguard and a bruxism (tooth grinding) mouthguard are the two most common kinds of dental splints.
A TMJ mouthguard is a hard piece of plastic that helps realign and stabilize the jaw, reducing TMJ symptoms by relieving pressure on the jaw. A bruxism mouthguard may be constructed of hard plastic or soft and flexible material; the choice depends on how bad the teeth grinding is. It provides cushioning and reduces any discomfort related to clenching.
Generic bite guards are available for purchase online or over the counter, but they are largely unregulated and ineffective. Patients need to avoid diagnosing and treating themselves; instead, see a dentist for the best outcomes.
For temporary relief from TMJ symptoms, the dentist may recommend jaw injections. This is a minimally invasive procedure that takes less than 30 minutes and requires no downtime. Injections of corticosteroids help alleviate inflammation and discomfort in the TMJ, as well as persistent jaw pain. Botox may potentially be used to alleviate TMJ problems. Botox is a neurotoxin that paralyzes the jaw muscles, reducing clenching and relieving discomfort.
The dentist may suggest more invasive TMJ treatment alternatives like arthroscopy, arthrocentesis, or surgery when the therapies mentioned earlier have failed. Essentially, it is important to visit the dentist for an exam to know which options they will recommend to relieve your condition.
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Temporomandibular disorder, more commonly known as TMD, affects much of the population. According to the National Institute of Health, up to ten million Americans deal with some type of TMD pain at some point in life. This disorder affects the joint that maneuvers the jawbone and can be highly disruptive to a person's life. While…
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