Have you been waking up to headaches? Do you have to stop during meals, because of severe jaw pain or tenderness? Have you heard popping noises in your ear, lately? Did you know that these are all symptoms of TMJ, which stands for Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction. TMJ can be a troubling condition, and one that can lead to a host of other complications over time, such as difficulty getting proper nutrition due to pain while eating, and subconscious teeth grinding, which can damage the teeth. Fortunately, your dentist can help address TMJ, allowing you to chew comfortably, once again, and that is certainly something worth smiling about!
Symptoms of TMJ Can Be Far-Reaching
As mentioned, pain related to the jaw, headaches, popping in the ear, and other discomfort in the jaw, neck or face can all be warning signs that you are suffering from TMJ. If you have been told you grind your teeth, either at night or subconsciously during the day, this could also be indication of TMJ, although in some cases the teeth grinding is what causes TMJ symptoms. In any case, it is best to schedule a dental visit if you suspect you could be suffering from one of these conditions, as a dentist can often help stop the discomfort and protect your teeth, as well.
How Can a Dentist Help?
In some cases, TMJ treatment is fast, simple and minimally invasive. That is because the dentist can often supply a patient with an oral appliance, that helps the teeth to rest in a more comfortable position at night, preventing grinding and also jaw discomfort associated with TMJ.
For others, more extensive treatment may be required. This is why it is best to speak with a dentist that specializes in TMJ treatment, which can be a complicated condition to first diagnose and then effectively treat. By finding a TMJ specialist, you are far more likely to find a solution for addressing your TMJ and improving your oral health and comfort.