Our dental professionals at Cleary Dental are experienced and trained to target any dental problem including TMD. The acronyms: TMD, TMJ, as well as TM, are all used to summarize temporomandibular jaw problems. TMJ is an acronym for the temporomandibular joint. This acts as a hinge where your jawbone meets your skull and there is a joint on each side of your jaw. TMD is a temporomandibular disorder. These are problems with your jaw movement and pain in and around your jaw joints.
Causes of TMD
Most people will experience jaw pain at some point in their lives, but luckily the discomfort that comes from TMD can be relieved by your own care and nonsurgical treatments. Joint and muscle problems can be complex and caused by a combination of factors, making them difficult to diagnose. Some people have jaw pain because they suffer from bruxism, meaning they tend to clench or grind their teeth. If you have TMD it can be caused by a jaw injury, arthritis, or genetics. The most common cause of TMD is muscle tension. This can be triggered if you have a lot of stress. If you have a habit of clenching your jaw when you are under stress you will start to develop TMD.
In order to diagnose your TMD, the dentist will ask some questions and do an exam. Our dentist will be able to determine if you have this condition by asking questions about your health and habits. The oral exam will allow us to check the condition of your mouth. We will take an x-ray of your jawbone and observe them closely.
Symptoms of TMD
TMD means you have pain in the muscles that control your jaw movement. If you have TMD you may have problems with chewing or pain when you chew. Another sign is an aching pain in your face, in your ear, or around your ear. If you have TMD you may experience locking of your temporomandibular joint. This will make it difficult to open or close your mouth. You may also hear a clicking sound or feel a grinding sensation when you chew or open your mouth.
It is important for you to know that if there is no limitation with these movements, and if the pain that you experienced is not often recurring, then you most likely do not need treatment. The great news is that jaw pain can be common and usually goes away on its own.
Treatment for TMD
The good news is that the symptoms of TMD usually go away without treatment. Some at-home treatments can relieve your jaw pain. In order to reduce pain at home, you should rest your jaw joint. In addition, you should eat soft foods, and avoid chewy foods.
If your jaw is feeling sore or you are feeling intense pain you can follow this remedy: use an ice pack or moist warm cloth on your jaw for 15 minutes at a time, a few separate times a day. While you do this gently open and close your mouth. You can also try switching back and forth between hot and cold. Some medicines may reduce swelling and relax your jaw muscles for a short time.
If you are suffering from TMD, our experienced dentists at Cleary Dental can diagnose you and use splints and surgeries to treat your painful symptoms. Consult with our dental professionals now by calling (856) 528-8607.