Tempro-Mandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD) is a common condition affecting a wide variety of people. TMD is characterized by severe headaches, jaw pain of varying degrees, grinding teeth, and an intermittent ringing in the ears. The vast majority of TMD sufferers are unaware that the root cause of these problems is something that a dentist can effectively treat.
The symptoms of TMD are debilitating and can greatly interfere with every day life. The comfort and general well being of the patient is at the heart of the dental practice, so pain relief is the first consideration of the dentist. The dentist is able to test, diagnose, and devise an immediate plan to treat the underlying causes of the TMJ disorder.
Reasons for treating TMD
TMD sufferers report that their symptoms generally worsen during periods of prolonged or unexpected stress, and that intense outbreaks of the condition can lead to neck pain and dizziness.
Clenching or grinding teeth, called bruxism, is particularly common and usually occurs at night. The grinding will eventually erode the structure of the teeth and lead to much more severe dental problems in the future. Untreated TMD is one of the prime underlying factors in head and neck pain and loose teeth.
It is important for anyone experiencing the symptoms of TMD to visit the dentist for an exact diagnosis.
What does treating TMD involve?
TMD is usually a result of several different issues. Initially, the dentist will thoroughly review the patient’s history, examine the head and neck area, take x-rays as indicated in order to make an accurate diagnosis and recommend necessary treatment.
Once a firm diagnosis is attained, there are several ways in which relief can be provided. A specially molded bite guard can be created to stop teeth grinding during the night. The dentist can also provide advice on relaxation techniques which will lessen the effects of stress. Most treatment will begin with conservative measures with reevaluation of the patient on a consistent basis until symptoms improve and/or resolve.
If you are experiencing any symptoms of TMJ, we encourage you to contact our office today to schedule an appointment.