Dentist in Highland, MI Offering Help to Patients Suffering from Temporomandibular Joint Disorder
Your TMJ, or temporomandibular joints, are sliding hinge joints which are what connect your jawbone and skull on each side of your face. The TMJ can become diseased and be the cause of pain and discomfort in both the joint itself and supporting muscle tissue. Dr. Jill Seguin and her team at Milford Dental Care in Highland, MI don’t want you to suffer needlessly from TMJ disorder. Many people, unfortunately, do suffer because they are not able to connect the symptom to the cause. Symptoms of TMJ disorder can include:
- A locking or stiffness in the jaw
- Pain while chewing
- Facial pain centering around the cheek, ears, or neck
These are symptoms that many do not associate with their TMJ, so they don’t think about getting it checked out. Dr. Seguin offers personalized treatment options for patients suffering from a TMJ disorder. In many cases, TMJ disorders are temporary and can be treated in several ways. Let’s discuss a few.
Initial treatment for TMJ disorder will most likely be a medicinal recommendation. Over the counter pain relief may be the first step such as pain relief medication (Tylenol) or anti-inflammatory NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen. These are not meant to be a long-term solution as prolonged use could introduce side effects so, if these are not efficient for treating TMJ pain, a stronger prescription could be recommended. Medication is not a prolonged solution to TMJ disorder but is good for temporary relief.
A mouthguard may work as a long-term solution to TMJ disorder as it can prevent the negative effect of teeth grinding while softening pressure on the teeth and jaw for those who clench. There has not been a concrete reason found for why mouthguards help so much with TMJ disorders, but it can’t be argued that they reduce the negative effects associated with teeth grinding and jaw clenching.
One of the best methods for relieving pain and working to correct TMJ disorders is physical therapy. Physical therapy is sustainable and a true long-term solution unlike medication, which is just a temporary stopgap for dealing with pain and discomfort. A physical therapy plan consisting of set exercises can be prescribed by your doctor and you can do them at home on your own.