Besides treating dental problems, we also help patients who are suffering from Temporomandibular Joint pain (TMJ) or Temporomandibular Dysfunction (TMD). TMD occurs when there is dysfunction with your temporomandibular joint that connects your jaw to your skull. This joint gives you the ability to open and close your jaw and move it from side to side. Without it, you wouldn’t be able to do things such as speaking, chewing and yawning.
At the moment, we still don’t know exactly what causes TMD; however, doctors believe that symptoms appear when there are are issues with the joint or jaw muscles. These can be caused if the jaw or joint becomes injured or damaged. Injury to the surrounding areas, such as your head or neck, can also cause TMD symptoms. Other causes include:
- Teeth grinding or clenching which places excessive stress on the joint
- Arthritis within the TMJ joint
- Stress, which can cause individuals to grind or clench their teeth
TMD symptoms include:
- Difficulty opening your mouth up or down or moving it from side to side
- Pain in your jaw area
- Pain in your neck or shoulders
- Ear-related issues, such as pain, ringing, or hearing difficulties
- Daytime fatigue
- Frequent headaches or migraines
As you can see, TMD symptoms are quite varied and can impact people in different ways. However, it’s important to note that just because you may be experiencing one or more of the above symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean that you have TMD. On the other hand, you may have TMD and not even realize it yet.
That’s why if you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort in your jaw or surrounding areas, you should get it checked out by your dentist. These checkups allow us to diagnose your symptoms and determine the root cause of your pain. Once we determine what is causing it, we can formulate an appropriate treatment plan to relieve your pain and discomfort. The dental team at Uptown Dental Gig Harbor is committed to helping you relieve your TMD pain once and for all. Contact us to set up an appointment today.