How to Get Relief from Temporomandibular Disorder

When you wake up in the morning and experience difficulty opening your mouth or chewing your food, it indicates that you have a problem with your temporomandibular joint. The TMJ is one of your complex joints that connects your jaw to your skull and when it is affected, it affects your quality of life. If you are struggling with TMJ in Dundalk, CHOICE Pain & Rehabilitation Center can help relieve your pain.

Symptoms of TMJ disorder

Some common symptoms to look for when you are experiencing TMJ disorder include:

  •         Difficulty in opening and closing your mouth, chewing, talking, and brushing your teeth
  •         You may experience shooting pain around the area of the affected joint, face, head, and neck and some swelling.
  •         You may find your jaw making some grinding or popping noises as you chew and lock-jaw where your jaw gets stuck in one position.
  •         Shoulder pain, earaches, and dizziness

What causes TMJ?

TMJ disorder can be caused by accidents or injuries to your jaw area and stress. Teeth clenching and grinding when asleep can also cause TMJ disorder. If you have a denture, dental crown, or fillings, you will likely have an uneven bite, which can cause TMJ disorder.

Temporomandibular disorder can also be caused by some health conditions such as arthritis, autoimmune diseases, and infections. If your disc is worn down, it will cause TMJ disorder. 

How is TMJ diagnosed?

Your doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination by checking your jaw movement, listening to any popping noise as you move your jaw, and examining your bite. Your doctor will also be keen on ruling out other causes of your pain.

For further examination, your doctor will recommend an X-ray to get a clear view of your joint. Your doctor may recommend a cone-beam computed tomography CBCT scan to give a more comprehensive idea of your joint for a superior diagnostic.

TMJ treatment

There are various treatment options for TMJ disorder.  Your doctor will recommend your treatment depending on the severity of your condition.

Oral medication

Your doctor may prescribe some over-the-counter medication to help relieve your jaw pain and inflammation and muscle relaxants to relax both your face and jaw muscles and lower your muscle contraction.

Botox injections

Your doctor may inject Botox into your facial muscles affected by pain to get rid of headache, severe stress, and help minimize lockjaw and any discomfort.

Steroid injections

The injections will help lower inflammation by suppressing your immune systems and reducing pain in your temporomandibular joint for some time.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy will help reduce pain and depression if your TMJ disorder is chronic by changing cognition distortions and behavior, thus improving your emotional regulation.

Corrective dental treatment

Your doctor may recommend you do some exercises to help strengthen and stretch your jaw muscles and show you how to massage your muscles. Eating soft food to avoid overusing your jaw muscles will also help. This treatment will also help you align your teeth and improve your bite.

For more detailed information on how to get relief from TMJ, call or book an appointment online with CHOICE Pain & Rehabilitation Center.

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